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August 28, 2006
I just read the Opinion piece written by Kathleen Garrity (DJC, Aug. 17) regarding PLAs and the ongoing Local 302 strike and I couldn't agree more with her position. Organized labor initiated a slick campaign that successfully convinced King County, the Port of Seattle, Sound Transit and the defunct Seattle Monorail Project board members to vote yes on PLAs as a way to “guarantee” labor harmony and control labor costs on major public projects. No one in the construction industry ever bought into the rhetoric, and for good reason.
In fact, the only guarantee an owner receives with a PLA is that the work will be performed by union members, and fair and open competition among contractors is restricted. Maybe public owners will finally see the reality of PLAs and how they serve only to benefit those that supported them: the unions.
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