We Can’t Fix NYCHA With Union Workers Alone

From Crain’s New York Business 

In his op-ed “Break tradition to save Nycha,” Carlo Scissura, the president and CEO of the New York Building Congress, proposes a unique solution to ease the massive financial burden of rehabilitating New York City’s public housing: market-rate development on Housing Authority land. While the idea is respectable, there’s one factor that must be considered to shield taxpayers from another costly burden.

If the city were to implement Scissura’s strategy, it’s crucial that projects not be subject to the use of a project labor agreement. A PLA is a pre-hire agreement with labor organizations requiring that the workforce comes from the local hiring hall.

Using PLAs virtually eliminates competition for the unions, ensuring their contractors win the work. Certainly, increased competition would ensure more projects were completed because it leads to lower bids.

Those who favor organized labor will argue that PLAs are a cost-saving measure. That’s simply false. They will point to pre-construction studies that use an antiquated labor model created to demonstrate that the PLA will save money. However, the outdated model fails to accommodate for the massive changes in the construction industry over the past few decades. Let’s also keep in mind that New York doesn’t require a post-PLA study to investigate if the alleged savings were actually realized. The reason is simple. Labor savings never materialize—and their proponents don’t want you to know that.

To fix our public housing crisis, we need a remedy, not another financial injury. New York is home to thousands of trained and skilled merit-shop workers who take pride in their work and in their city. These workers stand ready to make sure New Yorkers get the most out of their dollar.

Amanda Bertram

Vice President of Public Affairs

Associated Builders & Contractors, Empire State Chapter

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ABC President Brian Sampson’s Statement Regarding the Expansion of Prevailing Wage

By |March 27th, 2019|Categories: News, Statewide|

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.

Joint Statement – ABC and Unshackle Upstate: Assemblyman Bronson Dodges Call for Transparency in Sponsored Prevailing Wage Bill

By |March 26th, 2019|Categories: News, Statewide|

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 25, 2019 Contact: Amanda Bertram [...]

Ogdensburg Won’t Save Money With a PLA

By |January 31st, 2019|Categories: News, Statewide, Uncategorized|

For years, the city of Ogdensburg has struggled to gather funding for improvements to the wastewater treatment plant. Now, with the final financing pieces falling into place, the spendthrift City Council has voted to irresponsibly waste tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars to conduct a study to consider using a Project Labor Agreement: a discriminatory, pre-hire agreement with labor organizations requiring that the workforce comes from the local union hiring hall.

Mt. Kisco Should Reject Project Labor Agreement for Firehouse Project

By |January 29th, 2019|Categories: Long Island, News|

The critical project for renovations and additions to the Green Street firehouse will provide hundreds of construction jobs to the region. That’s the good news. The bad news? The Mount Kisco Village Board is making this taxpayer-funded project significantly more expensive by mandating a Project Labor Agreement (PLA).

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2018-10-25T15:38:14-04:00