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How can PLAs save money?

By  - 10/12/2012

Dear Editor:
Your article on Anna Dumont, executive director of the Rochester Building and Construction Trades Council ("Fast Start: Building jobs for economic equality," RBJ, 9/14/12), states that she is 23 years old, and I am sure she is a very bright woman. However, her views on labor in this community are, at best, instilled by union bosses who most likely are claiming they save money for industry, school districts and all government projects. In reality, how can that be?
 
Project labor agreements eliminate most open-shop contractors, leaving bids to a very small handful of union contractors bidding as they please. If you think that saves any organization money, you are quite mistaken. Project labor agreements are no more than deals made between unions and government for money and votes and actually cost owners more.
 
There are more open-shop, non-union workers in the Rochester-Monroe County area than there are union workers. Why should these hard-working Americans not be able to share in all available work? Could it be that unions are afraid of the competition where workers making prevailing wages actually take home more money? Please explain to me how PLAs save anyone money.
 
By the way, you have a nice article on the front page of the same edition on the $180 million project at the Erie Canal. Why not ask developer Anthony Costello if he has a PLA on that? I am sure the answer would be NO!
 
Richard Gianforti Sr., Penfield10/12/12 (c) 2012 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email service@rbj.net.