Tappan Zee Bridge Project Labor Agreement
A spokeswoman for the Cuomo campaign did not respond to a request for advice on whether the campaign knew that the unions working on the bridge had donated to the governor`s campaign or whether there were incentives for unions or unions to donate to the Cuomo campaign. Unions received up to $1.5 billion in bridge work questioned about the approval of work unions received on the new bridge, a spokesman for the Trades Council for Great New York Cuomos reaffirmed its support for infrastructure-related construction jobs. The Journal News first reported in November that crews were having problems with the first stacking batch. Peter Sanderson, project manager of the Thruway Authority, told the council that many local welders did not have the experience of piles of this size and that work was delayed. What is worrying is that qualified local and union construction workers, such as welders and their qualified non-union employers, cannot work on this project unless they sign the PLA. This PLA requires companies to hire most or all of their construction workers through union buildings, to respect the archaic rules of union work and to contribute to union performance plans. In 2011, a PLA, which was required for a New York State Department of Transportation highway project in Orange County, increased the cost of a highway contract by $72.5 million by $4.5 million. Cuomo`s political opponents, including his main challenger, Cynthia Nixon, and Republican candidate for governor Marc Molinaro, quickly claimed that the governor rushed to open the second installment of the bridge before the primaries to score political points. The New York State Thruway Authority and 14 workers` groups have alluded to a project work contract (PLA) for the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement project, Governor Andrew Cuomo`s office announced on June 18. The PLA, which is expected to save taxpayers approximately $452 million and provide thousands of jobs, will be a necessary provision of the PSR for the new bridge project. The agreement is subject to final approval by the Federal Highway Administration and the Thruway Authority Board of Directors.
In June 2012, the Rockland and Westchester County Building Workers` Councils voted against Governor Cuomo`s proposed PLA because they called for the prefabrication of bridge materials upwards, where wages are cheaper and union labor rules are relaxed. The PLA was finally agreed upon as soon as the cost savings were realized prior to prefabrication. However, Governor Cuomo said the PLA would save $452 million by securing union money-saving concessions on existing collective agreements (CBAs) such as changes to shift work time, uniform leave plans, salary adjustments for certain positions, and flexible apprenticeship rates. A project employment contract (PLA) is a pre-employment collective agreement that sets out the terms and conditions of employment for one or more construction projects. THE PLAs were first used in major public works projects in the 1930s, such as the Hoover Dam. Since then, many large complex projects, both public and private, have been successfully built in the United States with the PLA model, such as Kitsap Naval Base, Cove Point – LNG Export Terminal, LAX AIRPORT, the replacement Zee Bridge tappan and each of Toyota Motor Corporation`s North American production sites. The governor called it „absurd“ and „politically stupid“ and said it was not his decision to open the new fork, but the contractors on the bridge. But a letter received Monday by the New York Times contradicted Cuomo`s comments.