Aldermen echoed the concern and confusion some Cook County commissioners have raised about the nature and purview of the Chicago-Cook Workforce Partnership at a subject matter hearing Wednesday morning. The Partnership, established in 2012, is the designated recipient of federal workforce grants, and is one of the biggest workforce development entities in the country. Its total funding for 2016 is about $62 million, and it frequently works with city sister agencies to train and place people in in-demand jobs.

But aldermen expressed a disconnect. Ald. Susan Sadlowski-Garza (10) said she had never heard of, or from, the Partnership since taking office. Ald. Leslie Hairston (5) said the City Council had no role or oversight in the Partnership’s spending, and Workforce Chairman Pat O’Connor (40) suggested the city needed to “reassert” itself on some projects.  

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