Priority Issues

Priority Issue Briefs

Immigration Reform

ABC supports the reform of U.S. immigration policy to facilitate a sustainable workforce for the American economy while ensuring our national security and prosperity. Once the economy is restored, the construction industry will face an ever growing problem of shortages, both of craft-professionals and legal laborers who have difficulty becoming citizens or obtaining the necessary work permits. Unfortunately, the overall process to obtain legal eligibility in the United States is slow and cumbersome. ABC supports a more streamlined and expedited process to make the pathway to citizenship more efficient.

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Davis-Bacon Act/Prevailing Wage

The Davis-Bacon Act is an 80-year-old wage subsidy law administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that mandates so-called “prevailing” wages for employees of contractors and subcontractors performing work on federally financed construction projects. The Davis-Bacon Act, as administered by DOL, unnecessarily hinders economic growth, increases the federal deficit, and imposes an enormous paperwork burden on both contractors and the federal government. It stifles contractor productivity by raising costs, ignores skill differences for different jobs, and imposes rigid craft work rules.
 
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National Labor Relations Board

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is tasked with interpreting and enforcing the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The Board which normally consists of five members was meant to serve as a neutral arbiter of federal labor law. However, the NLRB largely has abandoned this role in an effort to unabashedly promote union organizing without regard to its impact on employers, employees and economic growth. The Board has issued controversial rulemakings,expanded its enforcement authority and issued dozens of precedent-reversing legal decisions impacting American workplaces all under
questionable authority.

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Government-Mandated Project Labor Agreements

Government-mandated project labor agreements (PLAs) end open competition on public works projects, denying the vast majority of qualified contractors the opportunity to fairly bid on federal and federally assisted construction contracts. Government-mandated PLAs needlessly increase construction costs, discourage competition from qualified merit shop contractors and stifle job creation for their skilled employees in the construction industry, which suffered from an unemployment rate averaging 13.5 percent in 2012.

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“Persuader” Reporting Requirements

In June 2011, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) proposed drastic regulatory changes to how it interprets and enforces Section 203 of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA), which covers federal reporting and disclosure requirements for entities hired by employers to communicate to employees regarding their right to organize. For decades, both employers and persuaders have been obligated to file public reports with DOL that disclose finances and other information if they engage in such activity.
 
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Workforce Development

The construction industry provides good, well-paying jobs to American workers every year. To qualify for many of these jobs, however, workers need high-quality, flexible skilled training.
 
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Energy/Environment

The call for a comprehensive energy policy has grown steadily stronger as gasoline prices rise. ABC agrees that alternative/renewable energy sources are vital to America's future.

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Estate Tax Repeal

When the owner of a construction company dies, the value of the company is added to the owner's estate and taxed after exemptions.

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Federal Contracting

The Obama administration has attempted to impose increased burdens on federal government contractors via policies that needlessly injure competition, increase taxpayer costs, stifle job creation, and delay the delivery of goods and services to the government and its customers. 

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Independent Contractors

Independent contractors are an important part of the construction industry due to its fluctuating work demands and are often the answer to a pressing demand for the special skills and know-how required for short-term projects.

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OSHA Reform

As builders of our nation's communities and infrastructure, ABC members know exceptional jobsite safety and health practices are inherently good for business.

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Regulatory Reform

The Obama administration continues to issue rulemakings that directly and indirectly impact the construction industry.

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Right to Secret Ballot Election

Currently, the preferred method for determining whether employees want union representation is a secret ballot election overseen by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

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Right to Work

The 1947 Taft-Hartley Act allows state governments to determine whether workers can be forced to join a union, or pay union dues or fees, as a condition of employment.

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Salting Abuse

"Salting" abuse is the intentional placement of trained union professional organizers and agents in a merit shop facility to harass and/or disrupt company operations, apply economic pressure, increase operating and legal costs, and ultimately put the company out of business.
 
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Tax Reform

More than a quarter century after its last significant reform, our nation's tax system is creaking under its own weight.
 
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Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) is a national trade association representing 22,000 members from more than 19,000 construction and industry-related firms. Founded on the merit shop philosophy, ABC and its 70 chapters help members win work and deliver that work safely, ethically and profitably for the betterment of the communities in which they work.