As Congress negotiates billions of dollars in potential federal funds for construction through the economic stimulus bill, President Barack Obama moved to bring back union-only project labor agreements as an option on federally funded projects. The president on Feb. 6 issued an executive order overturning a Bush administration ban on federal PLAs and opened the door to such pacts on projects of $25 million or more. The order fulfills a promise made during the presidential campaign to unions to advocate for their interests. Getting the PLA ban reversed was cited by union officials as a high priority on its wish
Despite a faltering international market, 2015 and the beginning of 2016 are proving to be strong years for U.S. contractors, with steady domestic growth and only moderate strain from workforce shortages.