Attention construction trade unions, you’re next!
Every newspaper in Ohio is reporting that yesterday John Kasich’s Ohio School Facilities Commission, which is headed by Governor Kasich’s Director of the Office of Budget and Management Tim Keen, voted to prohibit any local school district from requiring contractors in school construction jobs to pay the prevailing wage or use Project Labor Agreements (PLAs).
This is yet another one-size fits all, Governor Kasich knows best policy that takes choices away from local officials.
Governor Strickland removed the ban but then ran into trouble when his Chair of the School Facilities Commission seemed to be essentially requiring districts to require prevailing wage and PLAs in their construction contracts. The Ohio Inspector General did an investigation and found that the Chair’s action constituted as a “failure to remain neutral on union matters” as the OSFC is supposed to be.
Kasich’s new policy takes what is a neutral policy concerning the use of construction trade unions in school construction and turns it back into the anti-union policies during the Taft Administration.
And if you think this is only a prospective policy, think again. According to the AP’s reporting:
Keen said the panel would review those contracts already in place in light of Thursday’s vote.
Yep, they’re going back to every pending contract to see if they can void them if the local school district did a PLA or required the payment of the prevailing wage.
And we know that Kasich is going to go after the prevailing wage even further when he introduces his budget next month, but just remember:
John Kasich says it’s not fair to call him anti-union.
Seriously, Kasich just embrace the label. Because nobody’s buying any claim otherwise.