Another place to network into is local high schools and vocational schools. They are jam packed with young men who have no interest in going to college and no longer find the military to be an attractive option. Get to know the vo-tech teachers. They will point graduates in your direction once they know you are an upstanding businessman.
Another group to network with is superintendents who work for general contractors. Supers have first-hand knowledge of the various trades' foremen and crew leaders. Develop a relationship with those supers and at the least you will have a great reference check. At the best you will have an inside track on the up and coming foremen.
Other options are to scout out your competition. Watch them work. Do that cautiously. You don't want to start a labor war, but on the other hand, unless you are going to hire inexperienced workers, you are stealing your workers from someone else anyway. It's like the Godfather said "take it to the mat." You're in competition for both good clients and good workers. You'd better embrace the fight. Otherwise, you will never achieve financial security.
Can't Afford Proven, Skilled Workers
Be prepared to train your new workers and foremen. If you are a small contractor you've probably already learned how difficult it is to recruit and pay for highly experienced workers. If they are available and interested in working for you, they usually bring either heavy wage demands or heavy personal baggage. Those that are experienced and don't have baggage are almost always gainfully employed and not easily pried away from their current company.
As a small contractor, you need to focus on finding eager-to-learn, hard-working employees. Then mold them in the image that you want them to be. Teach them how to do the work the way you want it done. Encourage them to step up and take pride in their work. This type of worker can be hired for a much more reasonable rate.
What more could you ask for in a new worker anyway? Work ethic almost always trumps work experience when it comes to getting things done on time and correctly.