Monday, October 12, 2009

Non-Union Contractor Challenges Federal "Project Labor Agreement" Requirement

A non-union contractor in New Hampshire has filed a bid protest with the federal Government Accountability Office (GAO), charging that the "Project Labor Agreement" put into place on a $35 million federally funded construction project in Manchester unduly restricts competition to only union contractors and violates federal law.

Project Labor Agreements (PLA) require that all work on a public construction project be performed by union contractors and subcontractors. In February 2009, President Obama reversed an eight year prohibition on PLAs that had been imposed by former President George W. Bush. Obama's
Executive Order 13502 encourages PLAs on federal construction projects more than $25 million.

Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), a non-union contractor association, joined the non-union contractor, North Branch Construction, in filing the complaint against the GAO. "More than 91 percent of New Hampshire's construction workforce does not belong to a labor union," stated North Branch president Ken Holmes. The PLA requirement mandating that work be performed by union contractors only "basically knocks us out of the game," he stated.

For additional information on this bid protest, visit the following websites:

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