Rauner signs order helping veterans, minorities

– Associated Press – Monday, January 19, 2015
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner and his wife, Diana Rauner, paint a University of Illinois banner during a service day at Gage Park High School in Chicago commemorating Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday Jan. 19, 2015. The Republican governor later signed an executive order he said was aimed at lowering the unemployment rate for minorities and veterans. (AP Photo/Sara Burnett) Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/multimedia/image/ap_debe6ef6131db4036b0f6a706700fe98jpg/#ixzz3POVs2RPq Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner and his wife, Diana Rauner, paint a University of Illinois banner during a service day at Gage Park High School in Chicago commemorating Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday Jan. 19, 2015. The Republican governor later signed an executive order he said was aimed at lowering the unemployment rate for minorities and veterans. (AP Photo/Sara Burnett)

CHICAGO (AP) – Gov. Bruce Rauner signed an executive order Monday he said is a first step toward reducing disproportionately high unemployment rates among Illinois minorities and veterans.

The order requires labor groups, contractors and subcontractors who work with the state to submit a report within the next 30 days with the number of minorities and veterans participating in training or apprenticeship programs, which often are a pathway to full-time jobs.

The Winnetka Republican also ordered the state’s personnel agency to review state law on hiring and contracting preferences for veterans and to prepare a report on the ability of minority- and veteran-owned businesses to obtain state contracts.

Rauner said the reviews will help his administration determine what future actions may be needed to address unemployment rates he described as “way too high.”

“We can’t manage what we don’t measure,” he said.

Rauner issued the order after participating in a Martin Luther King Jr. Day service project, where Rauner and his wife helped paint banners and rally volunteers at Chicago’s Gage Park High School. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel also participated.

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