Monday, May 10, 2010

Is San Francisco's Preference Law for Minority and Women Businesses Legal?

The California Supreme Court heard arguments on May 4, 2010 over whether a San Francisco law permitting preferences of 5 to 10 percent for minority and women owned businesses violates Proposition 209, passed by California voters in 1996.  

Proposition 209, similar to what votes in the State of Washington passed in 1998 with Initiative 200, prohibits the use of preferences based on race or gender in public contracting, employment, and education.

The lawsuit was brought forth by two construction companies.  The City of San Francisco argued that the preferences are necessary "to protect citizens' right,." and that Proposition 209 violates the U.S. Constitution.

The Court is expected to issue a decision within three months.

For more details from an article in the Bay City News, click here.

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