As NELP explains in a new report, The Road to Responsible Contracting: Lessons from States and Cities for Ensuring That Federal Contracting Delivers Good Jobs and Quality Services, the experiences of cities and states with a range of “responsible contracting” policies provide a roadmap for reforming the federal procurement system. These policies prioritize purchasing from contractors that provide living wages and benefits, and comply with workplace, tax and other laws. States and cities have found that this approach not only creates better jobs, but also attracts a stronger pool of contractors, resulting in better quality highways and bridges, and more reliable security and maintenance services. At the same time, it minimizes the hidden costs to taxpayers that result when employers pay low wages. continue reading

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