City Council Reintroduces Bill that Would Restrict City-Funded Projects to Union Labor

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In a City/Region Where Fewer Than 1 out of 10 Construction Workers Belong to a Union, Bill Will Devastate Local Hiring

Just a little more than a year ago after it was first introduced, the Baltimore City Council has reintroduced legislation that would force subcontractors to hire their labor from union hiring halls on City-funded projects.  ‘Construction Projects – Project Labor Agreements’ was introduced by Councilperson John Bullock (9th District). The legislation would apply to any contract valued above $25 million or long-term capital projects at multiple locations with a combined value of more than $15 million “for all persons who will perform work on a construction project.”

“Baltimore is not a union town,” said ABC’s Mike Henderson. “Maryland is not a union town. Nearly 90 percent of the construction workforce in this town have chosen NOT to join a union.  So how are contractors going to fulfill this requirement? By having to hire people from outside the City, the State and even the region they are going to have to get them from those regions that are more heavily unionized, like Philadelphia, and Northern New Jersey.

“The City council talks about local hires. They talk about utilizing minority builders. This bill would deal a death blow to both.”

Henderson said defeating this bill is absolutely essential to the future welfare of this City and the region. “Baltimore can not afford to send a message to the rest of the world that unless you carry a union card, you are not welcome here.”