Reader's View: PLAs are ‘pay-to-play’ union shakedowns

PLAs are “scabbing” taxpayers and competitive, hard-working, non-union contractors.

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I smell a rat. It’s a big rat. It’s every bit as big as the building trades union’s giant rat mascot that gets pulled around on a trailer to intimidate and coerce jobs from non-union contractors and the taxpayers of our communities. The name of their mascot is “Scab.”

I suggest they change its name to “PLA,” for project labor agreement. Why? Because PLAs are “scabbing” taxpayers and competitive, hard-working, non-union contractors.

On June 2, prior to the Cloquet City Council meeting, I had a chance to renew old “friendships” with about 12 of these union activists. They were there to get the council to overturn the repeal of their PLA. It was just like old times. We engaged in some not-so-friendly banter. They told me, basically, that taxpayers owe them a job. I told them that if they wanted a job, they should submit the lowest responsible bid.

You see, I spent 35 years in construction sales before I retired. All the work I did was through the competitive-bid process. My livelihood depended on submitting a competitive bid that provided a quality, on-time product to the customer. I was required under the terms of my contract to meet all specifications and performance and labor standards stated in the contract. I didn’t need a union to do that. I provided value to my customers. Unions don’t.

PLAs need to be outlawed. They are nothing more than a “pay-to-play” union shakedown. We need government by the people for the people — not by the unions for the unions.


Lee Anderson


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