California’s construction trade unions greatly expanded their campaign in 2015 to get local elected officials to require construction companies to sign a Project Labor Agreement with unions as a condition of winning a public works contract.

In 2015, 47 California local governments considered a union Project Labor Agreement mandate for future taxpayer-funded construction contracts. On a few occasions in 2015, Project Labor Agreements were on the meeting agendas of three California local governments on the same day.

Most of these 47 Project Labor Agreements will, would, or would have applied to bundles of future construction projects planned for many years into the future.

The number of Project Labor Agreement threats at California local governments can be graphed as a line that rises gradually higher for 15 years (1994-2008), then curves more dramatically upward in the following 6 years (2009-2014), and finally shoots up 150% in the last year (2015). This 22-year trend can also be depicted as radiation starting from the urban core of California coastal cities that spreads at a quickening pace deep into the suburbs.

See the table below listing the 47 governments and the status of their Project Labor Agreement activities.


PROJECTDATEGOVERNING BOARD ACTION
University of California Board of Regents - Berkeley Global Campus in Richmond2015Board of Regents Pressured Throughout Year for Project Labor Agreement
East Bay Municipal Utility District - Chabot Dam Retrofit2/11/14Utility District Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement, Discusses Throughout 2014 and 2015
County of Monterey - Interlake Tunnel Project12/19/14Board of Supervisors Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement; Discusses on Occasion Throughout 2015
Whittier City School District - Measure Z Projects: Edward Roofing Project, Andrews School K-8 Conversion Phase l, Andrews School K-8 Conversion Phase 2, Painting Projects, and Strategic Fencing1/13/15School Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
Bassett Unified School District1/20/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Martinez Unified School District2/9/15School Board Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Formal Agenda Item
Valley County Water District2/26/15Water Board Receives Report from Board’s Capital Improvements & Rates Committee
Cuesta College (San Luis Obispo Community College District)3/5/15College Board Rejects Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Culver City Unified School District3/10/15School Board Informally Discusses Project Labor Agreement as a Future Agenda Item
Santa Clara Unified School District3/26/15School Board Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Formal Agenda Item
City of Long Beach - All Work Exceeding $500,0004/7/15City Council Approves Project Labor Agreement
San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors - New Animal Shelter4/7/15Board of Supervisors Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Agenda Item But Does Not Vote on It in the End
City of Hayward - New Library and Community Learning Center in Downtown Hayward; demolition of the former Library Building; Rehabilitation and Construction of Heritage Plaza; Other improvements4/14/15City Council Approves Project Labor Agreement
Chula Vista Elementary School District4/15/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District4/16/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District4/20/15School Board Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Formal Agenda Item
Santa Clara County - William F. James Boys Ranch (James Ranch) Renovation (Juvenile Probation Department)4/21/15Board of Supervisors Approves Project Labor Agreement
Azusa Unified School District5/5/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
San Francisco Housing Authority - Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) Projects5/20/15Housing Authority Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
Santa Clara County - Berger Building 2 Seismic Retrofit Project6/9/15Board of Supervisors Approves Project Labor Agreement
City of San Leandro - All Work Exceeding $1 Million in Estimated Cost or Bid Amount6/15/15City Council Approves Project Labor Agreement
Hayward Unified School District - Measure L Projects6/24/15School Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
Oxnard School District - Elm Elementary School Project and Other Measure R Projects6/24/15School Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
City of Berkeley - Amendment of Project Labor Agreement Reducing Project Cost Threshold to $500,0006/25/15City Council Approves Project Labor Agreement
Sacramento Municipal Utility District - New Headquarters6/25/15Utility District Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Vacaville Unified School District6/25/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board (CalTrain) - Peninsula Corridor Electrification Project7/2/15Train Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
San Mateo County Community College District7/8/15College Board Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Formal Agenda Item
Port of Long Beach - All Work7/13/15Port Commissioners Approve Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
City of Berkeley - Private Downtown Building Projects Over 75 Feet in Height (At Least Five Planned Projects)
7/14/15City Council Approves Project Labor Agreement
City of Marina - Mandate for Private Developments Within Fort Ord Reuse District8/18/15City Council Votes to Consider a Project Labor Agreement on a Private Project
Pinole-Hercules Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade Project9/1/15City Council in Pinole Approves Project Labor Agreement; City Council in Hercules Rejects Project Labor Agreement; Project Labor Agreement Included in Bid Specifications
Sacramento City Unified School District (renegotiation to lower project cost threshold)9/3/15School Board Facilities Committee Appoints Task Force
City of Alameda - All Work9/15/15City Council Discusses Project Labor Agreement as Formal Agenda Item
Salinas Union High School District - High School #59/29/15School Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
City of Glendale10/6/15City Council Schedules Project Labor Agreement Discussion But Then Tables It
Alameda Unified School District10/12/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Sweetwater Union High School District10/12/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Fremont Unified School District10/28/15School Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Long Beach City College11/10/15College Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Berryessa Union School District11/17/15School Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
City of Stockton - All Work11/17/15City Council Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District11/17/15College Board Approves Negotiations for Project Labor Agreement
County of Imperial - Phase II Adult Detention Facility12/8/15Board of Supervisors Approves Project Labor Agreement
Cerritos Community College District12/9/15College Board Approves Project Labor Agreement
County of Napa - Future Jail Projects12/15/15Board of Supervisors Discusses as Formal Agenda Item

Kevin Dayton is the President & CEO of Labor Issues Solutions, LLC, and is the author of frequent postings about generally unreported California state and local policy issues at www.laborissuessolutions.com. Follow him on Twitter at @DaytonPubPolicy.

One Response to Project Labor Agreement Threats Surge in California in 2015

  1. All these school districts will be using incredibly expensive borrowed money (bonds) that directly sock the taxpayers with the bill for these excessive and unwarrantedly extravagant projects.

    Look out California! 2016 is the year of the bonds! — Unless you put your foot down to squash them.

    http://www.bigbadbonds.com/

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