Press Release

Associated Builders & Contractors Issues Statement Urging Fair, Open Competition on State Fairground’s $50 Million

Statement from ABC, Empire State Chapter Director of Government Affairs Joshua Reap

“We applaud the efforts of New York State to modernize and provide much needed improvements to the State Fairgrounds, and certainly support continued investments that can spur further economic benefits. Having said that, and in light of the investigation into the awarding of contracts at the Solar City facility in Buffalo, we hope that New York State and relevant agencies do everything in their power to provide a transparent bidding process.  Unfortunately, based on documents we have reviewed, it looks like not much has changed as it’s clear that a similar bidding approach to the one being used in the ‘Buffalo Billion’ is being considered for this project.

We also encourage New York State to avoid a Project Labor Agreement (PLA). PLA’s are restrictive measures that would exclude the vast majority of local workers and contractors from bidding the work and preventing the best value and maximization of tax dollars. They are also proven to unfairly discriminate again Minority & Women Owned Businesses (MWBE).

Numerous academic studies have shown projects with government mandated Project Labor Agreements cost, on average, 12-18% higher than those done without. These added costs are often attributed to restricted competition. This comes as contractors are forced to adhere to antiquated jurisdictional work rules that prevent efficiencies of scale, and cannot bring many of their own employees on the job. As a result, merit shop contractors will not bid the work, limiting the pool of bidders and driving up costs.”


About Associated Builders & Contractors, Empire State Chapter

Associated Builders & Contractors was founded on the shared belief that construction projects should be awarded on merit to the most qualified and responsible low bidders. The Empire State Chapter represents over 400 members in the construction industry throughout NYS.