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Mayor Blasts Bill Preventing Companies From Credit Checks On Job Applicants

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TWC News: Mayor Blasts Bill Preventing Companies From Credit Checks On Job Applicants
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In what has become a recurring theme, Mayor Michael Bloomberg lashed out at the City Council Friday for legislation he says would be bad for business. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.

This time, the mayor's gripe with the City Council is over a proposed bill that would bar companies from running credit checks on job applicants.

"It would be irrational, irresponsible," Bloomberg said on his radio show Friday. "Of course you'd look at somebody's history. What else of basis are you going to decide whether a person's going to be a good employee?"

"There’s all kinds of things to look at," said Brooklyn Councilman Brad Lander, the bill's sponsor. "You look at people's resumes. You look at people's references."

Lander said bad credit can result from uninsured medical expenses or other uncontrollable circumstances.

"There's no evidence of correlation between your credit report and your job performance, or whether you're likely to engage in fraud," Lander said. "There's just not. Those studies have been done."

The credit check legislation is just the latest bill out of the City Council that the mayor has forcefully opposed as being anti-business. The list includes the so-called living wage bill, a measure that would bar hiring discrimination against the unemployed, as well as the paid sick leave bill, which applies to businesses with 20 or more employees.

"If we have 20 employees, fire one, and you're ahead of the game. Or, what they've done in other places, have two 10-person companies," Bloomberg said. "These things are nonsensical, and they are decisions being made by people who have never run a small business."

Bloomberg did not single out City Council Speaker and political ally Christine Quinn, who is also a candidate for mayor. He even praised her speech Thursday calling for city control of the MTA.

"At least Quinn's got some ideas," he said.

The mayor also had kind words for a bill that would more tightly regulate food trucks, sponsored by Councilman Dan Garodnick, saying it's worth looking at.

As for the credit check bill, Quinn, who controls what legislation comes to a vote, hasn't yet taken a position.

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