To the editor:
During President Biden’s rollout of the $2 trillion “American Jobs Plan,” he admitted he is a “union guy,” and wants to give unions a “piece of the action.” This is why his plan urges Congress to pass the Protecting the Right to Organize Act — a draconian rewrite of America’s labor and employment laws that’s filled with troubling provisions that will harm America’s workers, small businesses and economic recovery.
Just $1 trillion of Biden’s plan funds infrastructure, and he wants those construction projects to be built union-only. The plan calls on Congress to tie federal infrastructure investment to government-mandated project labor agreements. Controversial PLA schemes steer publicly funded construction contracts to unionized contractors and create jobs exclusively for union members at the expense of hardworking taxpayers and nonunion construction workers who comprise nearly 80% of Michigan’s construction industry. Research shows PLA mandates increase construction costs by up to 20% and result in fewer infrastructure improvements and new jobs for construction workers in our state, who face a 17.8% unemployment rate.
As Biden administration officials continue to sell this plan to the American public, listen for the familiar refrain that it will create union jobs. While such transparency may be refreshing to some, rewarding powerful special interests through anti-competitive policies rarely translates into positive outcomes for the American people.
If the AJP truly “includes everyone,” why does the Biden administration fail to acknowledge the millions of American workers pursuing their career dreams through well-paying, nonunion jobs?
Associated Builders and Contractors is a national construction industry trade association established in 1950 that represents more than 21,000 members. Founded on the merit shop philosophy, ABC and its 69 chapters help members develop people, win work and deliver that work safely, ethically and profitably for the betterment of the communities in which ABC and its members work. ABC Greater Michigan Chapter represents 280 members in Michigan. Visit us at www.abcgmc.org.
ABC Greater Michigan president