Build Up NYC
October 30, 2013
New York, NY – The New York City Council voted to approve the Staten Island St. George waterfront redevelopment project today after three labor unions and BFC Partners, the developer of the Empire Outlets Mall and hotel, finalized agreements that cover all construction, hotel, maintenance and security jobs.
BFC’s agreements were with the three unions of the Build Up NYC alliance, the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York, the New York Hotel Trades Council and 32BJ SEIU.
The developer of the world’s tallest Ferriswheel, also part of the waterfront redevelopment plan, previously committed to creating good jobs with health benefits.
“This agreement will bring good jobs for Staten Island residents and to the North Shore community,” said Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council and of Build Up NYC. “This effort demonstrates that we can pursue responsible development where business wins, working people win and residents of local communities win.”
“The St. George Waterfront project will become a world class destination and result in over $580 million in private investment creating good middle class jobs,”said City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. “I want to thank my colleague Debi Rose and everyone else who worked so hard on this important agreement for what it will mean not only to Staten Island but the entire city of New York.”
Hector Figueroa, president of 32BJ SEIU said: “On the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy we are pleased to have reached an agreement that will create good jobs for residents of one of the hardest-hit areas.”
And Hotel Trades Council President Peter Ward said: “This agreement paves the way for real benefits and economic development for Staten Island. It will create more middle class jobs in an area where they are very much in need.”
Debi Rose of City Council District 49 played an important role in bringing all the parties together: “Working men and women and residents of Staten Island can be confident that Empire Outlets will create jobs that pay good wages with health insurance, retirement security and investments in training and education that will allow employees, including new entrants into the work force from the local community, to support their families, advance their careers and join the middle class.”
Edward Josey, president of the Staten Island Branch of the NAACP, provided critical support to the movement for good jobs on Staten Island: “This is a big win for Staten Island. People who work on the project will now have good jobs with good pay, health and retirement benefits, jobs that can sustain families and communities.”
The labor leaders all said that the developer of Empire Outlets has committed to move forward with this $220 million project in a manner that has the support of the unions.
The mayor’s office estimates four million people a year will visit the project. Build Up NYC said the agreement for good jobs on Staten Island would not have been possible without the efforts of the Mayor, Council Speaker Christine Quinn, and Council Member Rose.
Build Up NYC is an alliance of working men and women committed to good jobs that sustain the middle class and to a level playing field for responsible employers.