A Message From the Director 

Dear ABC Members,

We need your help.

Every three to four years, the Franklin County Commission votes to implement a project labor agreement on a high-profile county construction project. On May 2, 2017 the Commission voted to implement a PLA on the construction of a new correctional facility, set to break ground soon. This is the third project in the last decade that has used a PLA.

In the Fall of 2017 the City of Columbus for the first time entered into a “community-benefits agreement” with the Columbus Building & Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO to cover work on the city’s new fire station. The use what is essentially another PLA resulted in a low bid of $8 million for the project representing a cost of $364 per square foot. The average cost of the previous five stations built in 2017 was only $196 per square foot. We reached out to Mayor Ginther to warn him of this massive and unnecessary over spending, but he was unwilling to hear our concerns.

If left unchecked, we fear we will see additional PLA activity in Columbus.

While ABC Central Ohio weighed-in with its opinion in each instance, our voice has gone largely unnoticed as the County Commission and City Administration have been, and still are, unabashedly supportive of the Unions.

To fight this tide of Union influence, ABC Central Ohio has secured a $20,000 matching grant from the National Construction Legal Rights Foundation to implement an anti-PLA digital media campaign aimed to a target audience likely to influence city and county decision-makers. Our tentative start date will be in June and the campaign will run for five months through November 6, 2018. Nearly 200,000 digital ads to over 3,000 devices and IP addresses will be delivered each month.

Our success is dependent upon our member involvement. We are seeking financial contributions that will allow us to take full advantage of the available matching funds for this project. Please consider supporting the cause by clicking here.

Barton Hacker

Legislative Rundown

Public Sector Right to Work Decision Pending
The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to issue rulings in May and June this year, and a decision is expected in the most important labor reform case in a generation, Janus v. AFSCME. This announcement could finally end the practice of requiring government workers to give part of every paycheck to a government union as a condition of public service.

House GOP Speaker Fight Helps Democrats Overcome Cash Disadvantage
Democrats see the ongoing internal House Republican battle — following the millions spent in the primary by speaker-hopeful Rep. Larry Householder (R-Glenford) and the Ohio House Republican campaign committee OHROC together with speaker-hopeful Rep. Ryan Smith (R-Bidwell) — as a benefit in November, the Columbus Dispatch reports.

Kasich Delays Endorsement of DeWine
Gov. John Kasich is waiting until after he meets with GOP gubernatorial candidate Mike DeWine to discuss a number of items including two Kasich priorities, JobsOhio and the Medicaid expansion, before announcing any endorsement, the Columbus Dispatch reports. Kasich had endorsed his lieutenant governor, Mary Taylor, in the primary although she repeatedly distanced herself from him.

Apprenticeships Must Be Expanded to Meet 21st Century Workforce Needs, Says ABC

According to the final report of the Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion, apprenticeship programs offer workers a career path with paid, on-the-job training and provide employers with highly trained workers, but they are insufficient to address the growing skills gap in many industries.

Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) commended the secretaries of labor, education and commerce for leading the task force comprised of representatives from industry, education and government to generate new ideas to expand the role of apprenticeships and help more individuals achieve the American Dream. The report was presented to the president in a meeting at the White House on May 10.

Click here to learn more.