In This Issue:
  • Devastating PRO Act Reintroduced
  • Federal Apprenticeship Bill Final Vote Tally
  • An Update On the I-81 Project
  • Final Unshackle Upstate Budget Memo 
  • How to Implement a Legally Compliant Workplace COVID-19 Testing Program While Waiting for the Vaccine to Arrive Webinar
  • Construction Back to Basics Safety Webinar
  • Did You Know ABC Has Recorded Webinars?
  • ABC Action App
  • Empire Chapter Resources
Good Morning Friends,
 
There are a few times each year when we feel compelled to send you a Merit Messenger that contains plenty of government affairs related information. It’s not our preferred approach. However, when government introduces laws and regulations and times them in such a way as they take effect around the same date, our hands get tied. This is one of those emails.
 
Please take the time to read this important Merit Messenger. This is information we deem important for you to know. As you read, please know the Chapter is here to help fight harmful legislation as well as keep you informed and educated so you can successfully navigate these turbulent waters.
 
We stand ready to assist you with any questions or concerns.
Devastating PRO Act Reintroduced
Last week, Senators Murray (D-WA) and Schumer (D-NY) and Representative Scott (D-VA) reintroduced the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act. The members released text of the bill, a section-by-section analysis, and a fact sheet. The bill now has 198 cosponsors in the House (H.R. 842), including two Republicans – Smith (NJ-4) and Fitzpatrick (PA-1). This bill includes dozens of radical provisions drastically altering federal labor law and will devastate the economy during an already difficult time.
ABC’s news release on the PRO Act can be viewed here and the ABC-led Coalition for a Democratic Workplace’s statement on the bill can be viewed here.
ABC is working to oppose the bill including solidifying the bill’s opposition in the Senate where the bill is currently subject to the 60-vote threshold and educating new House and Senate members about the dangers this legislation would pose to the construction industry, especially as we seek to maintain businesses and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. ABC urges members to reach out to their US Senators, Representatives and President Biden through the ABC Action Alert opposing the PRO Act.
FEA has created a website dedicated to opposing the PRO Act with resources for chapters and members including: a PRO Act fact sheet, social media tool kit, and educational videos.
Federal Apprenticeship Bill Final Vote Tally
ABC key voted against last week’s apprenticeship bill on the House floor that passed by a vote of 247-173, with 28 Republicans voting to support. The bill will now be referred to the Senate where it will be subject to a 60-vote threshold to pass. ABC has been reaching out to key Senators to express concerns about the bill and seek support on blocking its passage as currently written in the upper chamber.

Additionally, ABC is supporting an amendment to the bill introduced and made in order by Rep. French Hill (R-Ark.) that would eliminate a requirement in the bill for entities to partner with labor or joint labor organizations to be eligible grant funding under a new apprenticeship grant program. The amendment unfortunately failed by a vote of 186-236, with 2 Democrats voting for and 19 Republicans voting against.

If your Representative voted against the Hill amendment or for the passage of the bill, it is critical that they hear from their state and local chapters and local ABC members about the impact this bill would have on apprenticeship opportunities in the construction industry.
An Update On the I-81 Project
The I-81 project in Syracuse has been deemed a critical infrastructure project by nearly every elected official whether it be at the local, state or federal level. This project has been elevated to the attention of the new Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. We need to make sure Secretary Buttigieg clearly understands this project should not have a PLA placed on it preventing local contractors from bidding and winning the work.
 
We need you to get engaged. We need you to get active and help us in this fight by sending a letter to the Transportation Secretary today! We've made it easy for you, simply click the button below, review the letter and hit submit.

Final Unshackle Upstate Budget Memo 
Our advocacy partner, Unshackle Upstate, has identified some key components of the Governor’s proposed budget. While not all of the items are construction related, most of them will have an impact on your business. Please take the time to read the highlights and send any questions or concerns to Brian or Tanner.
How to Implement a Legally Compliant Workplace COVID-19 Testing Program While Waiting for the Vaccine to Arrive
 
Hosted by Littler Mendelson P.C.
 
Date: Tuesday, Feb. 16
Time: 3 p.m. ET
Speakers: Zoe M. Argento, Claire B. Deason, Philip L. Gordon, Melissa K. Peters, Kurt Rose, Littler Mendelson P.C.
 
Before implementing a COVID-19 testing program, employers should address a broad range of practical, logistical and legal issues. Our multidisciplinary panel will provide critical insights and actionable recommendations for employers grappling with the challenges of implementing a sensible, cost-effective and legally compliant COVID-19 testing program.
 
Construction Back to Basics Safety Webinar
Presented by Milwaukee Tools
Join the ABC Empire State Chapter for a complimentary Milwaukee Safety Webinar. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in live interactions with representatives and participate in different product demos. Attendees will also receive a market share presentation and learn to look out for in 2021.

Complimentary for all ABC Empire State Chapter Members!
Wednesday,
March 10, 2021
1st Session: 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.
2nd Session: 3:00 a.m. - 4:00 a.m.

For Registration and Questions please reach out to Amy Platenik
Cell: (585) 363-1657
The ABC Empire State Chapter has over 30 recorded webinars available to members on our website in case you were unavailable to attend them live.

Do you have questions about what to do if you have a COVID exposure at your site? What about Paid Sick Leave questions? We have conducted 30+ webinars with industry experts to focused on what matters to our members the most.

Click the button below to check out our recorded webinars:
As a resident of New York, you know first-hand how expensive it is to live and work here. Often times our elected officials are uninformed about the impact they have on our lives. This year we plan to flip the script to make sure your elected official knows how you feel. We’re going to make it simple for you to voice your opinion!

The ABC Empire State Chapter uses the ABC Action App to help us push information to you. The app will allow you to quickly weigh-in on critical issues. It’s easy to use and simple to get.
To Download the Action App:
  • Go to your phones Apple or Google Play Store
  • Search, "ABC Action App"
  • Download the App
  • Fill out your information
  • Submit Letters

By downloading this app, you will be an active participant in our government affairs efforts and play an important role in advancing and protecting the merit shop in New York State.

If you have any questions please reach out to Tanner Schmidt at tschmidt@abcnys.org
ABC Empire Chapter Resources