AGC to White House: No PLA Mandate
Friday, October 6, 2023
Section: Advocacy News

AGC of America meets with the White House on why it should not finalize its project labor agreement (PLA) mandate and why such a mandate would negatively impact union and open shop contractors.  

On October 3, AGC of America met with the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) to discuss its soon to be released project labor agreement (PLA) mandate, which will require every federal prime contractor and subcontractor to engage in negotiation or agree to PLAs on federal construction projects valued at $35 million or more, with limited exceptions. AGC urged OIRA to not finalize this PLA mandate for a litany of reasons, including but not limited to:

  • AGC analysis of government data shows that under the Obama-Biden Administration defense agencies chose not to mandate PLAs;
  • AGC survey results reflecting the negative impacts of E.O. 14063 on economy and efficiency in federal procurement;
  • How government mandates for PLAs harm union contractors;
  • How government mandates for PLAs harm open-shop contractors;
  • How the proposed rule goes beyond the statutory authority; and
  • The flawed analysis used by the government to justify the rule and its impacts on the construction industry.

Rest assured, AGC of America will rigorously explore every possible avenue—including legal options—to push back against this mandate, as underscored in the association’s public comments. This rule will repeal and replace the Obama-Biden Administration’s 2009 PLA E.O (E.O. 13502) once the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council issues a final regulation—thereby implementing this proposed rule and adding a federal contracts clause to applicable federal construction contracts—which is expected to take several months. AGC will offer its members resources to weigh in on the proposed rule and to contact their members of Congress. Through the association’s grassroots efforts, AGC members sent more than 8,500 communications against the proposal via formal comments and messages to their federally elected officials.  

AGC of America neither supports nor opposes contractors’ voluntary use of PLAs on government projects or elsewhere but strongly opposes any government mandate for contractors’ use of PLAs. AGC is committed to free and open competition for publicly funded work. AGC has long maintained that the federal government should not mandate PLAs. The use of government-mandated PLAs hurt union contractorsopen-shop contractors, and fails to promote economy and efficiency in federal procurement. According to an AGC of America analysis of data obtained via a Construction Advocacy Fund-financed lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act, the Department of Defense federal construction agencies rejected PLA mandates 99.4 percent of the time even when encouraged to do so under the Obama-Biden Administration.