National Apprenticeship Week Proclamation

TRI-CITY BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES COUNCIL

PROCLAMATION

NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP AWARENESS & APPRECIATION WEEK

NOVEMBER 8th – 14th, 2020

WHEREAS,  the Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council recognizes the urgent needs of the construction unions to train and maintain the most highly skilled trained workforce capable of meeting the needs of the industries in which we serve.

WHEREAS, the institution of registered apprenticeship programs has proven over many years to be the most effective method for the transfer of traditional knowledge and skill from one generation to the next.

WHEREAS, registered apprenticeship is the proven vehicle to incorporate training on new and emerging technologies for the apprentice and the journeyworker that will secure America’s future ability to sustain the rebuilding and maintenance of our infrastructure in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.

WHEREAS, recent U.S. economic circumstances and institutional education focus have created a generational gap in the number of trained, available and future journeyworkers to supply the immediate, short and long term needs of the building and construction trades

WHEREAS, registered and graduate apprentices understand the perseverance, technical aptitude, and team work required on the construction workplace as they strive each day to become more knowledgeable and capable through the structured related technical training and on the job instruction.

NOW THEREFORE, I Cory Bergfeld, President of the Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council, call upon all local unions and their industry partners to take measure of their current and future skilled workforce needs during:

NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP AWARENESS & APPRECIATION WEEK
NOVEMBER 8th – 14th, 2020

 I FURTHER CALL UPON all of the building and construction trades partners to recognize the purpose and value of registered apprenticeship training and promote industry awareness and expansion.

IN SOLIDARITY,

Cory Bergfeld, President
Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council

BUILDING TRADES STATEMENT ON PRESIDENT TRUMP ENDING COVID-19 STIMULUS NEGOTIATIONS

NABTU STATEMENT ON TRUMP ENDING COVID-19 RELIEF NEGOTIATIONS UNTIL AFTER THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

WASHINGTON, DC – October 6, 2020 – North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) President Sean McGarvey issued the following statement in response to President Trump ending COVID-19 relief negotiations until after the presidential election:

“I am appalled at President Trump’s decision today to walk away from negotiations at the expense of already struggling, hardworking Americans just trying to make ends meet during a pandemic. This is a breathtaking failure of leadership by the self-proclaimed ‘deal maker’ and a revealing display of priorities for him and his Republican allies. After months of dithering, division, posturing and empty promises, they and the President have now decided to turn their backs on their struggling constituents to shift sole attention to delivering for the only constituency that seems to matter to them – the well-financed elites who want to rush through a Supreme Court nominee. We are in the midst of a pandemic that requires humility, cooperation and true leadership, and by every measure, President Trump is failing our hardworking members in the construction industry, all frontline essential workers and indeed, the entire nation. He should immediately reverse course and convene negotiators until a deal is reached.”

Tri-City Building Trades Council 2020 Election Endorsements

2020 ELECTION ENDORSEMENT LIST
NOVEMBER 3, 2020
TRI-CITY BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES COUNCIL

FEDERAL ELECTIONS
President Joe Biden
U.S. Senate (IL) Richard Durbin
U.S. Senate (IA) Theresa Greenfield
Congress 17th District (IL) Cheri Bustos
Congress 2nd District (IA) Rita Hart
Congress 1st District (IA) Abby Finkenauer

ILLINOIS STATE OFFICES
Illinois House District 72 Mike Halpin
Illinois House District 74 Chris Demink
Illinois House District 93 Scott Stoll

IOWA STATE OFFICES
Iowa Senate District 46 Chris Brase
Iowa House District 89 Monica Kurth
Iowa House District 90 Cindy Winckler
Iowa House District 91 Kelcey Brackett
Iowa House District 92 Jennifer Kakert
Iowa House District 93 Phyllis Thede
Iowa House District 97 Ryan Zeskey

ROCK ISLAND COUNTY OFFICES:
Rock Island County State’s Attorney Dora Villarreal Nieman
Rock Island County Auditor April Palmer
Rock Island County Circuit Clerk Tammy Weikert
Rock Island County Coroner Brian Gustafson
Rock Island County Recorder Kelly Fischer
County Board District 6 Luis Moreno
County Board District 7 Carla Enburg
County Board District 8 Brian Vyncke
County Board District 9 Jeff Deppe
County Board District 10 Pat O’Brien
County Board District 13 Richard Brunk
County Board District 17 Ed Langdon

SCOTT COUNTY IOWA
Scott County Board Supervisor Rogers Kirk
Scott County Board Supervisor Jazmin Newton
Scott County Auditor Roxanna Moritz
Scott County Sheriff Pete Bawden

ILLINOIS JUDGES
14th District Circuit Judge Pete Church
14th District Circuit Judge John McGehee
9th District Circuit Judge Emily Sutton
Illinois Supreme Court Judge Retention – Tom Kilbride

CLINTON COUNTY
Clinton County Board Supervisor Mike Brown
Clinton County Sheriff Steve Diesch
Clinton County Treasurer Bill Jacobs

KNOX COUNTY
Knox County State’s Attorney Jeremy Karlin

HISTORY OF LABOR DAY

History of Labor Day

Labor Day: What it Means

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Labor Day Legislation

The first governmental recognition came through municipal ordinances passed in 1885 and 1886. From these, a movement developed to secure state legislation. The first state bill was introduced into the New York legislature, but the first to become law was passed by Oregon on February 21, 1887. During 1887, four more states – Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York – created the Labor Day holiday by legislative enactment. By the end of the decade Connecticut, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania had followed suit. By 1894, 23 more states had adopted the holiday, and on June 28, 1894, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

Founder of Labor Day

More than a century after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.

Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”

But Peter McGuire’s place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

The First Labor Day

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The Central Labor Union held its second Labor Day holiday just a year later, on September 5, 1883.

By 1894, 23 more states had adopted the holiday, and on June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland signed a law making the first Monday in September of each year a national holiday.

A Nationwide Holiday

Women's Auxiliary Typographical Union

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations” of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has changed in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics, and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pays tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership – the American worker.

REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD THANK A UNION

REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD THANK A UNION

Below is a brief history of the many employment benefits and laws that have been enacted because of the hard work America’s unions have done for our nation’s workforce.  On Labor Day please take time to thank your union.

 WHAT HAVE UNIONS DONE FOR THE AMERICAN WORKER:

Retirement benefits & pensions

Workers Compensation

Child labor laws

Unemployment benefits

Maternity Leave

Paid Vacation & Holidays

40 hour work week & 8 hour day

Fair Labor Standards Act

Overtime Pay

Minimum Wage

OSHA – Occupational Safety & Health Administration

Workplace Safety Standards

Medicare

Social Security

Employer Health Insurance & Health Care Benefits

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967

Whistleblower Protection Act

Civil Rights Act – prohibits employment discrimination

Family & Medical Leave Act

Veterans Employment & Training Services

Sexual harassment laws

Americans with Disabilities Act

Equal Pay Acts

 

 

CONSTRUCTION DEEMED ESSENTIAL SERVICE

NEWS UPDATE Construction Deemed An Essential Service During “Shelter in Place” Order

As you know, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker issued a statewide “Shelter in Place” order starting  (3-21-20) at 5:00 p.m. through April 7th. The shelter in place directive allows workers who provide “essential services” to provide those services.

Pursuant to the order, construction is deemed an essential infrastructure exception. Construction projects may continue as long as management and workers comply with social distancing requirements, which include maintaining at least six-foot social distancing from other individuals, washing hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds as frequently as possible or using hand sanitizer, cover coughs or sneezes (into the sleeve or elbow, not hands), regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces, and not shaking hands.

Many construction projects have implemented more stringent infection control measures, and if so, those should continue as well. Section 12 (h) of the Governor’s Executive Order states the following: “Building and Construction Tradesmen and Tradeswomen, and other trades including but not limited to plumbers, electricians, exterminators, cleaning and janitorial staff for commercial and governmental properties, security staff, operating engineers, HVAC, painting, moving and relocation services, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, Essential Activities, and Essential Business and Operations;”

A heartfelt thank you to all our tradespeople, contractors and sub-contractors for their tremendous dedication and service in keeping our nation moving forward in these unprecedented and challenging times.

LABOR HISTORY/LABOR ISSUES PRESENTATION

LABOR HISTORY- LABOR ISSUES  PRESENTATION

The Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council invites you to attend a presentation on Labor History & Labor Issues by Robert Bruno, Professor & Director of Labor Education at University of Illinois.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

IBEW Local 145

1700 – 52nd Avenue, Moline

Program 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (noon)

Refreshments will be provided

Professor Bruno’s presentation will trace the development of the labor movement and the contributions unions have made to society.   Professor Bruno will lead an exciting discussion on labor history and labor issues in the 2020 Election.

To register for the Labor History Presentation please respond via

e-mail to the Tri-City Building Trades Council at tcbuildingtrades@gmail.com or call the office at 309-786-1115

Tri-City Building Trades Council Supports National Apprenticeship Week

TRI-CITY BUILDING & CONSTRUCTION TRADES COUNCIL

PROCLAMATION

NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP AWARENESS & APPRECIATION WEEK

NOVEMBER 11– 17, 2019

WHEREAS,  the Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council recognizes the urgent needs of the construction unions to train and maintain the most highly skilled, highly trained workforce capable of meeting the needs of the industries in which we serve.

WHEREAS, the institution of registered apprenticeship programs has proven over many years to be the most effective method for the transfer of traditional knowledge and skill from one generation to the next.

WHEREAS, registered apprenticeship is the proven vehicle to incorporate training on new and emerging technologies for the apprentice and the journeyworker that will secure America’s future ability to sustain the rebuilding and maintenance of our infrastructure in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.

WHEREAS, recent U.S. economic circumstances and institutional education focus have created a generational gap in the number of trained, available and future journeyworkers to supply the immediate, short and long term needs of the building and construction trades

WHEREAS, registered and graduate apprentices understand the perseverance, technical aptitude, and team work required on the construction workplace as they strive each day to become more knowledgeable and capable through the structured related technical training and on the job instruction.

NOW THEREFORE, I Montie Schell, President of the Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council, call upon all local unions and their industry partners to take measure of their current and future skilled workforce needs during:

NATIONAL APPRENTICESHIP

AWARENESS & APPRECIATION WEEK

NOVEMBER 11TH – 17TH, 2019

 I FURTHER CALL UPON all of the building and construction trades partners to recognize the purpose and value of registered apprenticeship training and promote industry awareness and expansion.

IN SOLIDARITY,

Montie Schell, President

Tri-City Building & Construction Trades Council

Transportation Policy Committee Supports Opting Out of Road Swap

Reject road swap program

  • Updated 
Swaps art
On Tuesday, members of the Bi-State Regional Commission’s Transportation Policy Committee are scheduled to decide whether to take part in the federal aid swap program authorized by the Iowa Legislature in 2017.

For months, labor unions and local contractors have been lobbying against the program, which state officials say is a way to deliver projects faster and at less expense. The state says it has the experience managing projects that come with the overhead and regulations that are part and parcel of federal-aid projects.

Unions say this would be a way to avoid federal prevailing wage requirements, and that it will lead to lower-cost, out-of-area contractors winning jobs that previously had gone to local companies. They also say the swap will bypass federal requirements to buy American products and ensure some contracts go to minority- and women-owned businesses.

The swap program basically works like this: The state would give local governments state dollars in exchange for their federal dollars for road and bridge projects. According to the Bi-State Regional Commission, about $15 million dollars in swap-eligible funds are in its four-year Transportation Improvement Program.

Iowa’s Department of Transportation says this concept is not unique. Other states in the Midwest are doing it. And on these pages last week, Mark Lowe, the DOT director, wrote that the same amount of federal money, with all the attendant federal requirements, will be spent in this area – it will just be administered by the state DOT rather than local authorities.

Our concern is the impact this will have on local contractors. Consider Michelle DeCap, chief financial officer of Phoenix Corporation, of Rapids City, Ill. This Quad-City company has done projects on both sides of the river for years. DeCap told us that, even though the same amount of federal money might be spent locally, she believes the funds will be rolled into larger state jobs and there will be a smaller number of projects for her firm to bid on — meaning fewer opportunities for Phoenix, a certified woman-owned business, to win local projects.

A number of area organizations, many of them labor unions, have opposed this move. But so has the Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce. The chamber worried that participating in the swap program “may allow for more businesses from outside the Quad-Cities region that don’t follow [federal wage and discrimination] guidelines to garner work, which would have a direct negative impact on our region.”

The law passed by the legislature assumes the swap will take place unless a local planning organization decides to opt out.

On Tuesday, the Transportation Policy Committee will take up this matter – and there is a measure on the agenda that only the Iowa members of the committee vote, not those who are from Illinois. Arguably, this is an issue that affects the entire community. Still, the Iowa members are Mayors Frank Klipsch of Davenport, Bob Gallagher of Bettendorf and Marty O’Boyle of Eldridge; Scott County Supervisor Ken Croken and Ray Ambrose and Kerri Tompkins, who are members of the Davenport City Council. The DOT also has a seat on the committee.

We respect the state DOT’s wishes. The agency is a valuable partner in our community, particularly on the construction of the new Interstate-74 bridge. We also recognize that some smaller cities and counties may not have the staff and expertise to manage these dollars. But we have confidence in our local governments to be able to do so. After all, they have done it for years.

We also believe federal regulations that guarantee livable wages, the purchase of American products and providing opportunities for historically disadvantaged business owners are worthwhile – for local projects, as well as those managed by the DOT.

As we said earlier, we are concerned about local contractors, their employees and their families. Their wages and profits support other businesses and our community. The apprenticeship programs created as a result prepare our workforce.

What DeCap said echoed loudly with us.  If there are fewer opportunities for her company to compete on local road projects because they can now be accessed by lower-cost firms that aren’t from around here, that is not good for the Quad-Cities. We would add the Midwest Economic Policy Institute, a group working with those opposing the swap program, tells us its research finds that local contractors account for 10 percent less market share when Davis-Bacon standards are not included on projects.

The DOT has told us it would likely undertake more projects than it has in the past because of the swap program. We respect that goal, but we still must see the evidence.

This is a new program in Iowa. We believe it must prove itself. As it stands, we have doubts about what impact this would have on our local workforce and employers.

Our elected representatives, the people who sit on the Transportation Policy Committee, should take up their interests first. We urge them to reject the swap program.

DAVENPORT SUPPORTS OPTING OUT OF FEDERAL AID ROAD SWAP PROGRAM

Davenport mayor commits to leaving Iowa Department of Transportation’s federal aid swap program

051419-qct-qca-swap-001
Tri-City Building and Construction Trades Council Executive Director Jerry Lack spoke about his opposition to the Iowa Department of Transportation Federal Aid Swap program during a news conference May 13 in Jetty Park on the Bettendorf riverfront
Three of Davenport’s elected officials have vowed to leave a contentious program administered by the Iowa Department of Transportation that swaps federal dollars for state dollars on major infrastructure projects.

Called the “Federal-Aid Swap,” the program was put in place roughly two years ago under a Republican-led effort by Iowa lawmakers to bypass administrative and engineering costs required for projects that receive federal money. All cities and towns in the state were automatically adopted into the program.

Proponents of the program say it saves taxpayer dollars, while opponents have argued that the federal requirements that the state is bypassing protect prevailing wages for workers and ensure materials are bought from American manufacturers.

Davenport has three seats on the Bi-State Regional Commission’s transportation policy committee, the metropolitan planning organization that oversees federal projects in the Quad-Cities. That committee is scheduled to vote on opting out next week. If the matter goes to a vote with only Iowa members participating — an expected outcome — then the regional commission will likely become the second in the state to leave Iowa’s program.

Scott County Supervisor Ken Croken, another committee member supporting the opt-out, said leaving the program is a major influence on the “future economic vitality of our region.”

For months, labor leaders — along with a growing coalition of contractors and business groups — have called for the opt-out. Members say participation in Iowa’s program threatens to take jobs from local workers and harm the regional economy.

Meanwhile, others in the Iowa Quad-Cities are steadfastly opposed. Bettendorf Mayor Bob Gallagher, another voting member of the transportation policy committee, said Wednesday that his city stands to lose between $800,000 and $1.6 million on its big federal project for Forest Grove Road because of the “federal hoops” that have to be jumped through.

Gallagher also challenged the conclusion that swapping federal dollars would lead to fewer jobs for local contractors, saying “that’s just not true.”  “The frustration is we are having to deal with misinformation in an attempt to sway a decision,” Gallagher said, adding: “ It does save taxpayer money in the end, and that’s why I support staying in the Iowa program like every single other (metropolitan planning organization) in Iowa except in Johnson County, which is the only one that has opted out.”

Back in Davenport, Mayor Frank Klipsch, who is chairman of the deciding committee, made his announcement on the opt-out during a meeting in City Hall. He prefaced the message by saying the decision had been made after consulting aldermen and others in the community.

“We’ll be voting to opt out next week,” the mayor said, earning applause from several attendees who’d come donning T-shirts with union logos.

Ryan Drew, an organizer with the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150 in Rock Island, thanked the mayor and council members for their decision, saying the local workforce “is something that the community should be proud of.”

“Not everywhere in the country, not everywhere in this state, can you go and build a $1 billion bridge and use local workers,” he said. “That pays great dividends to this community.”