On February 29, 2012, Federal Judge Victoria Roberts ruled that the "Michigan Fair and Open Competition in Governmental Construction Act," could not be enforced. The 2011 legislation was an anti-project labor agreement (PLA) statute, which prohibited publically-funded entities from entering into or expending funds on construction work under a project labor agreement. Project labor agreements require all contractors and subcontractors who perform work on a project to abide by the terms and conditions of union labor contracts, including paying into union benefit funds, even though the contractor may be non-union and employees may never benefit from those contributions.
The Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council and Genesee, Lapeer, Shiawassee Building and Construction Trades Council filed a challenge to the anti-PLA statute. Judge Roberts ruled that the state anti-PLA legislation could not be enforced because it interfered with federal labor laws. The State, specifically Attorney General Bill Schuette, has filed an appeal. In the meantime, public owners across the state may once again begin to require that contractors and subcontractors sign a PLA to work on a project.
If you have any questions, please contact Mike Nystrom at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at the MITA office at 517-347-8336.