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Francis Lowe's Articles

The Bottom Line with ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu - July 7, 2020

July 7, 2020.

High School Seniors in ACE Mentor Program Win $400,000 in Scholarships

Twenty-three students have won college scholarships worth between $5,000 and $40,000 in the second year of a national competition organized by the ACE Mentor Program, a free after-school program created by the integrated construction industry to attract students into pursuing industry-related careers.

OFCCP Publishes Directives on Contractor Compliance Evaluations

On April 17, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs issued guidance to increase accountability and efficiency in its enforcement and to maximize the effectiveness of compliance assistance resources to assist contractors in meeting their responsibilities.

West Virginia Supreme Court Upholds State’s Right-to-Work Law

In a victory for worker freedom and the merit shop philosophy, on April 21, the West Virginia Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the Workplace Freedom Act, the state’s right-to-work law, in a 4-1 decision.

New York Expands Prevailing Wage to Private Projects

The New York State Legislature took action to include an expansion of prevailing wage in the state’s budget for fiscal year 2020-21, which was signed into law on April 3 by Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D). The provision expands the view of what projects are considered “public works” and applies prevailing wage to private projects of $5 million or above in project cost that receive at least 30% of their financing from public assistance. This assistance goes beyond direct public investment to include loan and grant programs and certain tax incentives, greatly increasing the number of projects required to pay prevailing wages.

DOL Issues Additional Guidance on Federal Paid Sick and Family Leave Requirements

The U.S. Department of Labor continues to issue compliance assistance materials on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which went into effect on April 1. On March 18, the Senate passed and the president signed into law H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which requires private-sector employers with fewer than 500 employees, and certain public employers, to provide covered employees emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave.

ABC Virginia Chapter Kicks Off Apprenticeship Program

The ABC Virginia Chapter has started implementing a competency-based component for their registered apprenticeship program.

ABC Video Release: Introducing 2020 ABC National Chair, Tim Keating

Tim Keating, owner and president, R. C. Stevens Construction Co., took the reins as the 2020 ABC national chair at ABC’s March Board of Directors meeting. “With decades of combined industry leadership and experience, Tim Keating is committed to ABC’s value proposition to help our membership develop people, win work and deliver that work safely, ethically and profitably for the betterment of the communities in which they work,” said Michael Bellaman, ABC president and chief executive officer. Check out ABC’s new video to learn more about Tim and his goals for ABC in 2020.

Deal Reached on Emergency Economic Relief for COVID-19 Virus

Today, Democrats and Republicans in the Senate arrived at a deal to provide approximately $2 trillion in federal funding and programs to address the ongoing health crisis. The legislation would send checks to many Americans under a certain income threshold, create a $350 billion loan program for small businesses and establish a $500 billion lending fund for industries, cities and states.

ABC Adds COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Resources: Toolbox Talks, Continuity Plans and More

ABC has assembled Emergency Preparedness and Response Resources to help our chapters and members quickly access the latest information and guidance regarding the coronavirus. Resources such as COVID-19 Toolbox Talks, both in English and Spanish, are now available. Other resources, including sample continuity plans and project shutdown and startup procedures are also available.

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CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES:

ABC is here to help and provide support in any way as we navigate this crisis together. Please find ABC coronavirus resources for members as well as chapters operations: