Study Examines Cost of PLAs to Nonunion Workers and Employers:
ABC issued a press release calling attention to a new report that highlights the negative economic impact of controversial government-mandated project labor agreements on nonunion construction workers, who comprise 87.3% of the construction industry workforce. The study found that the limited number of nonunion craft professionals permitted to work on construction projects subject to a government-mandated PLA suffer an estimated 34% reduction in wages and benefits. In addition, the report found that PLA mandates unnecessarily increase nonunion contractors’ wage and benefits costs by an estimated 35% and expose firms to the risk of costly multiemployer pension plan liability.
“These additional costs make nonunion contractors less competitive with respect to price compared to firms without such duplicative benefits costs, which is likely to discourage nonunion contractors from competing for taxpayer-funded construction contracts,” according to the study.
The construction industry shut down for a few months last year during the pandemic — but was quickly deemed essential, allowing paused projects to continue. But in that short time, the sector lost more than 1 million workers. The industry has recouped nearly 80% of its workforce since then, but is still down 238,000 workers from pre-pandemic levels as of June, according to the Labor Department.
The Biden administration released an executive order last Friday on promoting competition in the American economy that continues the president’s efforts to push for passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act.