A shortage of bids on the New York State Fairgrounds pedestrian bridge project will leave New Yorkers paying more, but getting less. When plans for the project were released with an accompanying project labor agreement (PLA), the playing field narrowed from 20 companies interested in the project to just two submitting bids, with the lowest bid coming in well in excess of $1 million over engineering estimates. Why the drastic decrease in competition and increase in costs? The answer can be found in three simple letters: PLA.
Let’s not be fooled. Proponents of the expansion of prevailing wage are already doing great damage to taxpayers. They shouldn’t be allowed to ruin what little positive job growth we now have in New York.
“What’s clear is that some contractors will have to deal with cost overruns that they can’t pass on to their customers,” said Brian Sampson, president of the Associated Builders & Contractors of New York. “But in most cases, the increased cost of the tariffs will be passed on to customers resulting in more expensive construction projects or higher costs for capital goods.”
The first class to complete the intensive 10-week, 40-hour construction training course offered by Jefferson Community College was celebrated at a recognition ceremony Friday at the Lewis County JCC Education Center.
Valued Member,Safety on a construction site goes far beyond reducing injuries. It’s about coming together to protect one another and make sure we get home safely every night. The construction industry is considered one of the most dangerous employment sectors for American workers. That’s why today marks the beginning of a week long campaign to [...]
The PLA study, which cost Ogdensburg taxpayers $21,000, purports that with a series of false savings, labor consolidation and “management rights,” the project will save money. Yet no one challenged the study’s creator, Tim Seeler of Seeler Engineering, to positively prove those savings will be achieved. They also never asked him about the negative impact the lack of competition will have on the bidding process. They simply rubber-stamped the study and closed the door on local contractors and their employees.
A PLA is a pre-hire agreement requiring the workforce comes from local union hiring halls. However, unions only account for 21 percent of the construction workforce across New York, with that number being even smaller in the Lake George area. PLAs effectively bar the majority of local contractors and their workers from bidding and winning work that their own tax dollars fund. PLAs do nothing more than eliminate competition for unions, ensuring their contractors win work, and decrease the number of bids on a project, driving taxpayer expenses.
From The Watertown Daily Times OGDENSBURG — A spokesperson for the state chapter of a national construction association representing non-union companies and their workers says the organization’s board of directors will decide whether to mount a legal challenge in state Supreme Court over the City Council’s recent decision to adopt a Project Labor Agreement [...]
The Chapter provides a recap of the budget passed for the new fiscal year.
The reports are clear. The use of prevailing wage on projects does not improve the quality of the project nor does it make them safer. Instead, it means projects will cost 15-30% more and any financial support will need to be increased to make those projects feasible. We shouldn’t be making New York more expensive.