After facing opposition from the AFL-CIO’s Building and Construction Trades Department, Executive Order 13202 was recently upheld by a U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. The order, which prohibits project labor agreements (PLAs) on federally funded and assisted construction projects, had been struck down in August 2001 when the AFL-CIO sued to bar its enforcement and a District of Columbia federal judge found in favor of the union.
A PLA is a binding agreement between a labor union and the federal government establishing basic terms and conditions for the duration of the project. Common components of a PLA include paying union wages and benefits, requiring union job classifications, and arbitration procedures.
In the ruling, the Court of Appeals held that Article II of the U.S. Constitution grants the president broad supervisory authority over the executive branch in the administration of federally funded projects and that an executive order restricting the use of PLAs on federal construction projects falls within that supervisory authority.