Inside this issue
  Union Only PLA on state projects to be introduced  

The Community Workforce Agreement Act which will mandate Union only Project Labor Agreements on state-funded construction projects over $3 million is scheduled to be introduced in the General Assembly in May.   ABC Delaware vehemently opposes this Act and will vigorously defend the right for open shop contractors to bid and perform state work.  We will relentlessly challenge union-only project labor agreements at the legislative, judicial and regulatory level.  For a copy of this act, please click here.  We will be asking for your support to contact state legislators in the next few weeks. Please respond to the email we send by using our online grassroots program which will allow you to send an email to your state legislators.

The Act states, "a public entity shall include  a community workforce agreement in a public works project on a project-by-project basis. Taking into consideration the size, complexity and cost of the public works project, the need for promoting labor stability and advancing the interests of  the public entity in cost, efficiency, skilled labor force, quality, safety and timeliness, and , in the case of a public entity which is a political subdivision, promotes employment of residents of the political subdivision, .the public entity shall  either: directly negotiate in good faith a community workforce agreement with one or more labor organizations engaged in  the construction industry; or condition the award of a contract to a contractor upon a requirement that the contractor  negotiate in good faith a community workforce agreement with one or more labor organizations engaged in the construction industry. If the contractor and the labor organizations engaged in the construction industry cannot agree to the terms of the Community workforce agreement, the Governor shall appoint a designee to assist the parties in reaching a Community workforce agreement."

Every Delawarean has the right to make a living and have equal access to state work, regardless of organizational membership.  We must guarantee open competition and competitive bidding for all public projects, to ensure that contracts go to those who will do the best work at the best price, regardless of affiliation.  Every Delawarean deserves the opportunity to compete, win and execute work based on merit - not because of union affiliation or other discriminatory factor.



  Paid Family Leave Bill Clears the General Assembly  

A bill seeking to create a system allowing Delaware workers to take extended periods of paid time off has cleared the legislature and heads to the governor for his expected signature.

Senate Substitute 2 for Senate Bill 1 (a.k.a. the Healthy Delaware Families Act) will establish a trust fund to pay for the benefit, financed with payroll taxes split evenly between workers and employers. The system will be administered by a new bureaucracy under the Department of Labor. 

 Starting in 2026, private sector employees will be able to take up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave per year for the birth, adoption, or placement through foster care of a child.  State workers and school employees already have access to this perk.

Additionally, the new law will allow state and private sector workers to take up to six weeks every two years to care for a family member with a serious health condition or to deal with their own significant medical issues. Workers qualifying for both types of leave will be limited to a total of 12 weeks annually.

Workers will be entitled to receive 80% of their normal wages, up to a maximum of $900 per week. This benefit will be indexed to inflation beginning in 2027.

Seasonal businesses and small employers (those with less than 10 workers) are exempt from the act. Businesses with 10 to 24 employees will only be subject to the parental leave provision of the law. The parental, family caregiving, and medical leave provisions of the measure will apply to all businesses with 25 or more workers.

The legislation was repeatedly modified and revised since it was first introduced last May.




  $300 Direct Payments to be Issued by the End of May  

Governor John Carney on Thursday signed House Bill 360 that will soon send direct payments to most Delawareans. 

Announced last month, the bipartisan measure will create a relief rebate - a one-time direct payment of $300 per Delaware resident who filed a personal income tax return for the 2020 tax year. Married couples who filed jointly will receive $600. The rebate initiative will also apply to adult residents who did not file a 2020 tax return. 

The mechanism is intended to help Delawareans deal with the rising cost of food and fuel by returning a potion of the state's record surplus revenue to them.

The rebate will not be subject to state income taxes.

Under the measure, Delawareans who filed 2020 income taxes would receive payments automatically without having to take any action. Payments to this group of more than 600,000 residents are expected to be distributed by the end of May. 

The bill instructs the Department of Finance to establish a process to provide the rebate to resident adults who did not file a 2020 state income tax return - such as seniors and lower-income residents - by identifying them through existing databases held by other state agencies. Those residents would receive their rebate as they are identified.

The Department of Finance will work with the Department of Technology and Information to implement a process by which eligible residents who have not been identified by other means will be able to apply for and receive the relief rebate, subject to verification of their identity and eligibility.

In total, the rebate will return surplus funds to more than 750,000 Delawareans. The state currently has a projected surplus topping $1 billion.



  ABC Pushes Back on Biden's Pro-PLA Policies in the News  

Associated Builders and Contractors sent the White House a letterwith more than 1,200 signatures from member companies and chapters representing the construction industry strongly opposing President Biden's executive order mandating project labor agreements on federal public works projects exceeding $35 million. You can view ABC's press release on the letter here.

The letter lays out concerns with Executive Order 14063 and other federal agency policies promoting PLAs on federally assisted construction projects, which would affect the allocation of funds under the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package that was signed into law last year as well as other laws providing funds for state and local governments to improve its infrastructure.

The Washington Post columnist Joe Davidson covered the letter in his April 14 column on PLAs, "Construction firms hit Biden labor agreement plan that unions praise," and interviewed ABC's Ben Brubeck. Today Brubeck appeared on Fox Business News to discuss the letter and the Biden administration's inflationary pro-PLA policies that are a lose-lose for taxpayers and the construction industry. Feel free to share these media hits with membership and on your social media with a reference to our federal anti-PLA coalition website

As a reminder, has studies, media/op-eds, social media kits and coalition letters as well as a grassroots portal for the public to engage on this issue. This April 6 blog post has an update on ABC's fight against government-mandated PLAs that may also be helpful for internal communications with public works contractors and ABC members.



  ABC Survey Sent to Contractor Members on Davis-Bacon Act  

An important survey on prevailing wage regulations was distributed to ABC's contractor members yesterday. Please note that the survey was sent out through ABC's survey software Qualtrics, meaning it was sent out from a "no-reply" Qualtrics email address under the name Ben Brubeck. This survey gauges ABC members' opinions and experiences with Davis-Bacon and Related Act regulations, and specifically the U.S. Department of Labor's proposed updates. A link to the survey is available here:

2022 ABC Davis-Bacon Survey

Understanding the impact of prevailing wage regulations on our members will be vital to providing informed comments to DOL and pushing back on this harmful rulemaking, which expands Davis-Bacon Act covered work and increases the likelihood wage rates will be set at union rates. ABC needs as many members to respond as possible. The survey will close at 5 p.m. ET on May 2nd. 

Please reach out to Michael Altman at if you have any questions.




  Registration for ABC's Virtual Legal Conference on June 23, Is Now Open!  

This is a must-attend virtual conference for ABC members, including merit shop labor attorneys and construction contractors, and ABC chapter presidents, government affairs directors and attorneys.  

Join ABC leaders, legal and regulatory experts and government officials as they share the latest developments in labor and employment law and their impact on merit shop contractors.

Learn more and register today!



Legislative Committee

May 26, 8:30, ABC Classroom

Legislative Job Site Tour

May 26, 11:00 a.m. Wegmans, Barley Mill Plaza