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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 17, 2004


NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF SMALL BUSINESS SERVICES TO LAUNCH HIRING INITIATIVE AT STEINER STUDIOS IN BROOKLYN NAVY YARD

REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL RELEASED FOR FILM INDUSTRY WORKFORCE CONSULTANT

The Workforce Development Corporation (WDC), a not-for-profit corporation affiliated with the New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS) and chaired by SBS Commissioner Robert W. Walsh, today released a request for proposals to hire a workforce consultant to coordinate a hiring initiative with Steiner Studios and other film industry-related employers at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, which will bring hundreds of jobs to the area. In July, the Department of Small Business Services (SBS) will establish a recruitment outpost at the Brooklyn Navy Yard and will collaborate with its Workforce1 Career Centers, The Training and Employment Council in Brooklyn (TEC/Brooklyn), and numerous community-based organizations, to establish a single point-of-contact between local jobseekers, production companies and vendors involved in Steiner Studio productions. 

"This initiative is a win-win for the businesses in the film and television industry and for residents of the Downtown Brooklyn area and beyond," said SBS Commissioner Robert W. Walsh. "Steiner Studios and the films and shows that produce there will have a highly qualified, pre-screened pool of talent to work with and residents will have access to the new job opportunities at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. This complements the efforts of the Brooklyn Workforce1 Career Center in Downtown Brooklyn, which the Mayor opened last week, and is another example of the new direction of workforce development under the Bloomberg Administration."

"This is the right way to get things done," said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. "Brooklynites can't wait for this innovative job placement service to open in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, which will focus on hiring residents of public housing in Whitman, Ingersoll and Farragut Houses to work at Steiner Studios - or as I call it, Hollywood East. This initiative and the Workforce1 Career Centers demonstrate that Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Walsh believe that it is not enough when only a few flourish when our economy grows. I think we need to coin a new phrase for Workforce1 and businesses who hire within their Brooklyn communities: YIMBY - Yes, in my backyard!"

"The opening of Steiner Studios will provide a tremendous boost to the City's and Brooklyn's economy," said New York City Council Member Letitia James. "This initiative insures that the residents who live near the Navy Yard will have access to the job opportunities the film industry will bring to Brooklyn. I commend the Bloomberg Administration for taking proactive measures to make sure that all New Yorkers benefit from New York City's economic recovery."

"The Brooklyn Navy Yard continues to be a vital engine of economic growth for the community surrounding the Yard and the entire city," said Eric J. Deutsch, President and CEO of the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation. "The Yard's role as a job generator will be further enhanced with the opening of Steiner Studios later this year. This initiative will maximize local employment opportunities in the film and television industry here at the Yard and complement the BNYDC's outstanding record of providing workforce development services to area residents through our successful Employment Office."

"Steiner Studios will grow the film and television industry and the demand for good employees," said Jay Fine, President and CEO of Steiner Studios. "The Bloomberg Administration is making it easier for Steiner and other companies to thrive and grow by connecting us with some of the great talent Brooklyn and the rest of the City has to offer."

The consultant will be responsible for establishing relationships with local community organizations and educational institutions to create a steady pipeline of candidates for production related jobs and ancillary services at the Steiner Studios complex.  The consultant will also be responsible for conducting outreach to the Fort Greene community, including the New York City Housing Authority's Farragut, Ingersoll and Walt Whitman Houses.

WDC was created to contribute to the economic vitality of the City by promoting workforce development and job creation through public/private partnerships. WDC funds support employment, training and educational services and are also directed toward research on unemployment trends. 

TEC/Brooklyn is a WDC project to promote workforce development and job creation in Brooklyn.   TEC/Brooklyn's principal planning partners are SBS, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and the Brooklyn Borough President.  TEC/Brooklyn provides employment counseling and training services to job seekers.  It also assists local businesses by screening potential employees to match their skills, experience and training to businesses' hiring needs.  By linking Brooklyn businesses to a prepared and skilled labor force, TEC/Brooklyn increases the opportunities for Brooklyn job seekers to secure meaningful employment and ensures that area residents benefit from Brooklyn's economic revival.

Steiner Studios is a 15-acre film and television production complex scheduled to open this fall at the Brooklyn Navy Yard in Brooklyn.  The Brooklyn Navy Yard is operated by the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corporation ("BNYDC"), an affiliate of the City.

The Department of Small Business Services makes it easier for companies in New York City, to form, do business and grow by providing direct assistance to business owners, fostering neighborhood development in commercial districts, promoting financial and economic opportunity among minority- and women-owned businesses, and linking employers with a skilled and qualified workforce. The Brooklyn Workforce1 Career Center at 9 Bond Street in Downtown Brooklyn is a one-stop shop for career counseling, job placement, educational advancement and workforce services for businesses. 

Interested parties are can obtain copies of the RFP by emailing proposal@sbs.nyc.gov. The deadline for submission is May 26, 2004.



  Ethan Davidson (212) 513-6318