SPUR’s 31st annual Good Government Awards, held earlier this year, honored five City of San Francisco employees and teams who have performed exceptionally, becoming models for other agencies and cities around the country.
The JobsNow Program was arguably the most innovative and effective subsidized employment program in the United States. During a time of high unemployment, the JobsNow team quickly built a local structure that put thousands to work in San Francisco. By acting fast and getting the word out to private and nonprofit employers, they were able to capture the largest amount per capita of any city in the country out of the Federal government's $5 billion in funding for subsidized employment. They were consistently ahead of target and had 1,000 people already enrolled in San Francisco at a time when no other city in the country had anyone enrolled. Upon termination of the program they had employed 4,127 people and captured almost $60 million in wages for San Franciscans. They managed and developed a program that efficiently put thousands to work, made strong connections with the business community and began to establish a new model for delivering workforce development services.