In an earlier posting, we noted that the President had signed Executive Order No. 13502 requiring that Federal projects over $25 million have a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) with the unions. As noted in the original posting, this move supports the unions and effectively blocks 85% of the country’s construction workers from working or bidding on government projects. It seems that other organizations are adopting that rule as well. At the University of Iowa, the Board of Regents voted 5-4 to adopt a PLA for a new outpatient clinic it is building in Coralville, Iowa. According to the Coralville Courier, the Associated Builders and Contractors of Iowa (ABC) is protesting, but so far, has not made any progress. The article quotes ABC’s President and CEO, Greg Spenner as saying
“PLAs, which are contract agreements written by union bosses are designed to ensure that projects are awarded only to unionized contractors. In Iowa, 8 out of 10 construction workers have chosen not to join a construction labor union. A union negotiated contract ... prevents such a large majority of Iowa’s construction workforce from working on a project. This is blatant discrimination and the Culver cronies on the Board of Regents took this partisan action under direct pressure from Governor Culver who signed an executive order earlier this year requiring state agencies to consider using these discriminatory agreements.”
It appears that this is one more example of the spread of the PLAs into the construction industry just when the stats show the industry is suffering from 25%+ or 2 million unemployed right now.
What is going on in your locale on this issue?