New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento sets record straight on Public Works Legislation

For Immediate Release:  Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Contact:  Darcy Wells - 518.859.1274

[email protected]

Albany – The misinformation campaign being spread by some, regarding public works legislation, cannot go unaddressed.

Anytime taxpayer dollars are used on construction work, we should be raising the standard of living and quality of life for our workforce and all New Yorkers.

That’s what the Bronson/Ramos bill will do.

The bill simply addresses the legal, regulatory and legislative changes that have eroded the intent of the public works law.

It restores the objective of the New York State Constitution which requires prevailing rate be paid to workers on public works projects. It will help prevent developers from using contractors and labor from out-of-state when taxpayer dollars fund construction. Instead, our public dollars will be used to pay New York’s residents a fair wage.  

It will not raise project costs as some claim. Labor costs make up less than 25 percent of the typical costs of a construction project. But it will prevent the exploitation of workers who otherwise would have their pay driven down.

This bill will not only help working men and women get better paying jobs; it will create safer workplaces, ensure high quality work and hold contractors and developers accountable.

Hardworking New Yorkers have waited long enough. There is no more time for delay and distraction; it’s time to reform the public works law now.

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The New York State AFL-CIO is a federation of 3,000 unions, representing 2.5 million members, retirees and their families with one goal; to raise the standard of living and quality of life of all working people. We keep New York State Union Strong by fighting for better wages, better benefits and better working conditions. For more information on the Labor Movement in New York, visit nysaflcio.org.