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Senate HELP Committee Holds Confirmation Hearing on Secretary of Labor Nominee R. Alexander Acosta

On March 22, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) held a confirmation hearing on the nomination of R. Alexander Acosta to serve as United States Secretary of labor. President Trump nominated Acosta to head the U.S. Department of Labor On Feb. 16. Acosta’s nomination must be approved by the HELP Committee before the full Senate can vote on his nomination. 

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Take Action: Ask Congress to End Government-Mandated PLAs in Federal Contracting

ABC is encouraging all members to call on their representatives in Congress to cosponsor the Fair and Open Competition Act (H.R. 1552/S. 622). The bill, introduced by Rep. Dennis Ross (R-Fla.) in the U.S. House of Representatives and Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) in the U.S. Senate, would ensure controversial project labor agreements (PLAs) cannot be mandated on taxpayer-funded construction projects.

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Wisconsin Legislature Approves Bill Banning PLA Mandates

On March 9, the Wisconsin State Assembly approved SB3, which prohibits government-mandated project agreements (PLA) on state and local construction contracts.  The Assembly voted 64-25 to concur on the bill, following the Wisconsin State Senate’s passage of the measure by a vote of 19-13  in February. Both votes occurred along party lines.  

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House Passes Legislation to Block OSHA’s “Volks” Rule

The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation to block implementation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) “Volks” final rule through the Congressional Review Act. The bill (H. J. Res. 83) was passed in a bi-partisan vote of 231-191.

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R. Alexander Acosta Nominated to Serve as Secretary of Labor After Puzder Withdraws

On Feb. 15, President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Labor, former CKE Restaurants CEO Andrew Puzder, withdrew from consideration of the position. Prior to his withdrawal, Puzder was slated to appear before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions for a hearing on Thursday Feb. 16. 

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Legislative Update
The House and Senate are in session this week. On Monday, The Senate Judiciary Committee will begin a full committee hearing on the nomination of Neil Gorsuch to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court. The House Rules Committee will meet to formulate a rule on H.R.372, the "Competitive Health Insurance Reform Act of 2017"; and H.R.1101, the "Small Business Health Fairness Act of 2017." On Wednesday, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee will have a hearing on the nomination of R. Alexander Acosta to be Labor secretary. The U.S. Senate will vote to join the U.S. House of Representatives in passing a resolution (H.J. Res. 83) that will block implementation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) “Volks” final rule (also known as Clarification of an Employer’s Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness) through the Congressional Review Act (CRA). On Thursday, the House is scheduled to vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA).