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Orange County Focus

ORANGE : Reprieve Studied for Dayworker Center

August 12, 1993|MARTIN MILLER

The City Council may reverse its decision to shut down the Jobs Resources Center on Sept. 1.

Reacting to the concerns of business owners and residents, the council this week directed police to work with parks and recreation officials in preparing a study outlining the center's usage and to propose other uses for the center.

In addition to offering job training and language classes, the center's primary function is to match day laborers with potential employers.

Facing a $2.1-million budget deficit for the 1993-94 fiscal year, the council voted in June to close the center on McPherson Avenue north of Chapman Avenue. City officials said the closure would save the city about $63,000.

"When we voted to close it, it seemed to be the right thing to do because it would save money," said Mayor Gene Beyer. "But since then, I've gotten many calls and letters expressing concerns that workers will be loitering in front of businesses again."

The city is expected to make a final decision regarding the center Aug. 24.

The council opened the center three years ago to keep day laborers from congregating near businesses. It also passed an ordinance prohibiting loitering.

"The center has been successful," said Police Chief John R. Robertson. "And if they close, it the problem is going to come back."

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