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President Trump Signs Executive Order Expanding Buy American Preferences

On Jan. 31, President Trump signed an executive order, “Strengthening Buy-American Preferences for Infrastructure Projects,” which expands the administration’s preferences for American products in federal procurements and federal financial assistance awards on critical infrastructure projects.

EPA and Army to Host Public Hearing on New WOTUS Proposal

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of the Army announced plans to host a public hearing on the new “Waters of the United States" proposed rule in Kansas City, Kansas, Feb. 27-28. The hearing was previously scheduled for Jan. 23 but was postponed due to the lapse in appropriations at the EPA. 

OSHA Offers Updated Compliance Materials, Resources for Winter Weather Safety

ABC members are encouraged to review the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s compliance assistance products, which were updated in the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2019, and OSHA’s winter weather safety page, which features information on preventing workplace injury from various weather hazards.

ABC Submits Comments on NLRB’s Joint Employer Proposed Rule

On Jan. 28, ABC submitted comments on the National Labor Relations Board’s joint employer proposal, which would establish an updated standard for determining joint-employer liability under the National Labor Relations Act. Additionally, the ABC-led Coalition for a Democratic Workplace submitted comments in support of the NLRB’s proposal.

OSHA Update: Final Rule Issued on Electronic Injury Reporting

On Jan. 25, OSHA issued the Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses final rule, which eliminates the requirement for establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically submit information from OSHA Form 300 (Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses) and OSHA Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report) to OSHA annually.

Survey: ABC Members Strongly Oppose Government-mandated PLAs

ABC members overwhelming reported that government-mandated project labor agreements harm their businesses, hiring and workforce development practices and ability to complete work safely, on time and on budget, according to the results of a December 2018 membership survey published today.

Some Construction Industry Pension Plans Remain in Financial Trouble

Merit shop contractors are typically wary of competing for taxpayer-funded construction contracts subject to a government-mandated project labor agreement for a number of reasons, among them concerns about the viability of multiemployer pension plans as a way to help employees achieve their retirement goals—and exposing their business to potentially catastrophic MEPP liability. New information from the U.S. Department of Labor bears out those concerns.

ABC Honors Top Membership Recruiters

ABC has added six members to the Beam Club Presidential level for recruiting between 25 and 49 new members. The Beam Club was established in 1966 to recognize ABC's top membership recruiters for their commitment to growing the association. For more information, contact Leiloni Hayward at hayward@abc.org.

Employer Update: OSHA Civil Monetary Penalties Increase

On Jan. 23, pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act, the U.S. Department of Labor published a final rule to adjust for inflation the civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by the Department, including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, for 2019. This final rule is effective on Jan. 23, 2019.

Union Membership Decreased in 2018

The percentage of union members in construction has decreased by more than a percentage point, from 14 percent in 2017 to 12.8 in 2018, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The overall percentage of union membership in all industries is down from 10.7 percent in 2017 to 10.5 in 2018, with the total number of workers belonging to unions standing at 14.7 million. These numbers cover wage and salary workers belonging to unions broken down by demographics, industry, hours and state.