Tax-incentive packages being awarded by municipalities and states to manufacturers to locate big projects are including local-hire requirements for construction labor that contractors say can be tough to meet."Most owners receive state incentives and support to attract these projects, and that puts the challenge on us to find local subcontractors who are qualified and have capacity," says Chris Morgan, project manager at Michigan-based Walbridge Construction. "The difficulty varies by the state or region."Before starting work in 2012 on the first $975-million phase of the Benteler Steel plant near Shreveport, La., Walbridge knew it had to meet local hiring mandates for
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.