OMB Encourages Discriminatory and Costly Union-Only PLAs on Federal Construction Projects

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) July 10 issued a policy memorandum to all federal department and agency heads encouraging the use of discriminatory and costly government mandated project labor agreements (PLAs) on all federal construction projects.

This memorandum comes in advance of the Federal Acquisition Regulation Council’s (FAR) proposed rule on President Obama’s Executive Order 13502, which encourages the use of PLAs on construction projects costing more than $25 million.  The proposed rule is expected to be released July 14.

“The proposed rule itself contains many serious flaws, particularly with regard to the impact statement, the absence of any meaningful criteria for agencies to use in deciding whether to impose PLAs, and the absence of any empirical justification for PLAs on federal projects,” said Geoff Burr, ABC vice president of government affairs.

“What is even more troubling is the OMB memo to all executive and agency department heads encouraging them to consider PLAs before the comment period has expired.  Union-only favoritism on federal construction projects violates longstanding procurement laws and will be challenged.”

ABC strongly opposes union-only PLAs on construction projects. These agreements not only exclude open shop contractors from bidding on projects paid for by their own tax dollars, but also drive up the cost of construction.

To read the OMB policy memorandum, click here.
To read Executive Order 13502, click here.


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