Biden PLAs, Apprenticeship Mandates Meet Industry Opposition

The Biden administration has a plan to create a highly skilled diverse workforce to complete infrastructure projects over the next decade. Biden’s idea is to encourage job training programs in certain sectors in order to benefit communities and groups lagging in male-dominated trade industries. A Biden executive order seeks to impose project labor agreements (PLAs) on all federal construction projects worth at least $35 million as a means to do that. “The use of a PLA can provide structure and stability to large construction projects,” said the White House. “PLAs also help ensure compliance with laws and regulations governing workplace safety and health, equal employment opportunity and labor and employment standards.” PLAs guarantee a contractor will enter into collective bargaining agreements with at least one union covering the duration of the project. Biden’s February executive order directed federal agencies to use such agreements on construction projects above $35 million.

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