- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 23, 2014

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Congressman Bobby Rush on Monday demanded that African-Americans get a “35 to 40 percent” share of the jobs being created by plans to reconstruct a Chicago Transit Authority rail station on the city’s South Side.

Rush gave CTA officials until the close of business Friday to make an ironclad commitment to award contracts to black construction workers. He contends building the lives of people who live around the station is about as important as building the station.

About $240 million will be spent to reconstruct the 95th Street Red Line station, which serves 20,000 commuters daily.

After groundbreaking for the project, CTA Board Chairman Terry Peterson said two of three construction contracts have been awarded. He noted one has a goal of 25 percent participation by disadvantaged business enterprises. The other requires a 30-percent share.

Two years ago, Rush threatened to block the $133 million construction of a railroad bridge project unless black contractors got more jobs. The jobs were found.

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