Court Says Road Project Guidelines Inappropriately Discriminated Against Nonunion Contractors

Washington Free Beacon | 1/20/2019 | Dave Lemery -
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Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court ruled Friday that the state Department of Transportation tilted the playing field against nonunion construction companies when it required a "project labor agreement" for any firm that won the bidding on a road improvement project.

The PLA would have meant that any nonunion employer that won the contract for the work in Montgomery County would have to hire its workers for the project through a set of 11 local unions. But the request for bids carved out an exception for contractors associated with United Steelworkers.

Contractor - Allan - Myers - Firm - Terms

Contractor Allan Myers, a nonunion firm, protested the terms of the bid request in December 2017 on the grounds that it essentially barred any companies that didn’t have a union workforce from winning the contract while at the same time providing favored status to United Steelworkers-affiliated companies. PennDOT rejected that protest in February 2018, leading Allan Myers to file a lawsuit in response.

The Commonwealth Court in its ruling Friday, citing its own past decisions, recognized that there are instances where it might be appropriate to require the use of local union workers when there’s a strong time element at play. In one case a convention center needed to be completed in a hurry to meet funding requirements. In another a school needed to be open in time for the new school year. And in the third, an exploding prison population dictated that a new prison had to be completed...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Washington Free Beacon
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