Governor Announces New Directive for Use of Project Labor Agreements

While visiting the Pennsylvania Laborers Training Center in Butler County, Governor Josh Shapiro announced a new directive for all Commonwealth agencies under his jurisdiction to evaluate and implement the appropriate use of Project Labor Agreements (PLAs) on Commonwealth projects. Commonwealth agencies will use PLAs on future projects in every instance when the project meets the following criteria: particular need and urgency; complexity of the project; lack of available qualified labor.

All agencies will examine each contract solicitation to determine if a PLA is appropriate and allowed – helping to ensure the Commonwealth’s public contracting processes for these solicitations are completed in an efficient and timely manner to support the successful completion of capital projects at a fair cost to Pennsylvania taxpayers.

“From repairing our roads and bridges, to building homes and businesses, to establishing critical infrastructure that connects and powers our communities, building trades workers do the hard work that strengthens our infrastructure and grows our economy. I respect that work,” said Governor Josh Shapiro. “Today, I am issuing a new directive to Commonwealth agencies for the appropriate use of Project Labor Agreements. PLAs guarantee a steady, consistent supply of workers with the right skills to get the job done and set wages and benefits for all workers up front, and often result in major construction projects that get delivered on time or early, on or under budget. If we follow my new roadmap, we can use more PLAs, and get more quality projects done with skilled labor, on time and on budget, and create more opportunity for Pennsylvanians in the process.”

Effective April 1, 2024, the Governor is directing all Commonwealth agencies under his jurisdiction to examine all contract solicitations to determine if the use of PLAs is appropriate. DGS, led by Secretary Reggie McNeil, will partner with all Commonwealth agencies to proactively attach PLAs to solicitations when DGS and the agency establish the need for urgency of the project, recognize the complexity of the project, or validate concerns regarding the availability of qualified labor.

“Our commitment at DGS is to leverage PLAs whenever appropriate to ensure Pennsylvania’s capital projects are executed effectively and inclusively, utilizing skilled labor to meet project timelines and deliver quality outcomes for our residents,” said DGS Secretary Reggie McNeil. “Serving Pennsylvanians and strengthening our partnership with businesses is paramount at DGS. By prioritizing transparency, accountability, and integrity in our procurement practices, we build trust and attract top-tier vendors eager to work with the Commonwealth.”

Pennsylvania law permits the inclusion of PLAs in certain solicitations, provided they do not preclude any contractor from bidding on the project, the bidding process is open to both union and nonunion contractors without discrimination, and the use of nonunion labor is allowed. PLAs are appropriate in situations where the PLA requirement relates to the need for the prompt completion of the project or concerns with the availability of qualified labor.

Under the leadership of Secretary Mike Carroll, PennDOT will also proactively attach PLAs to solicitations if a project meets the same criteria of a particular need and urgency, complexity, or if there is a concern about the availability qualified labor.

“Of all the states in the Mid-Atlantic region, Pennsylvania’s construction industry has an especially impressive history of creating opportunities for local workers and businesses,” said Dennis Martire, Vice President and Mid-Atlantic Regional Manager of LIUNA. “And now, Pennsylvania is going to do that well into the future through project labor agreements thanks to Governor Shapiro’s leadership.”