Associated Builders and Contractors issued the following statement from Michael Bellaman, its president and CEO, in reaction to President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address.

“The construction industry is currently up against historic global supply chain disruptions, rising materials prices, a workforce shortage of 650,000 and regulatory chokeholds. To make matters worse, ABC’s 21,000 members have faced a barrage of anti-growth regulatory actions and policies from the Biden administration that have driven up construction costs, created barriers to job creation and damaged the American economy.

“From President Biden’s support of the devastating Protecting the Right to Organize Act to Executive Order 14063, which mandates the use of anti-competitive project labor agreements on large-scale public works projects, and the union-favoring COMPETES Act, this administration has spent its first year in office relentlessly advocating for policies that steer construction contracts to unionized companies and workers. Yet 87.4% of the construction workforce has chosen not to join a union. President Biden must consider the negative conditions he is creating for the industry that wants to build and modernize America’s roads, bridges, airports and affordable housing under the bipartisan 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and other legislation financing federal and federally assisted construction projects.

“The Biden administration and Congress must put aside partisan politics and the influences of special interest donors and embrace bipartisan solutions that give all 7.5 million workers in the construction industry the opportunity to rebuild America.”