Local Business Community Gets Behind Fair and Open Construction Tendering

(Kitchener-Waterloo, Dec 6, 2017) – The Progressive Contractors Association of Canada (PCA) welcomes the support of the Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge and Hamilton Chambers of Commerce who’ve come together to express their concerns about the impact of restricted construction tendering on taxpayers, contractors, workers and municipal infrastructure budgets. The local chambers have joined PCA in calling on regional and municipal governments to do their part to stop construction labour monopolies.

“We’re delighted local business leaders recognize that our local governments need to step up and be heard,” said Sean Reid, VP and Regional Ontario Director for the Progressive Contractors Association of Canada (PCA). “This is a call for greater local leadership on an important issue.”

Local chambers have joined several prominent provincial groups including the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) and the Large Urban Mayor’s Caucus of Ontario (LUMCO). They’re calling on the province to amend the Labour Relations Act to allow qualified contractors in ALL municipalities to bid on public projects.

Right now only select companies affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners are allowed to compete for projects in the Region of Waterloo and Hamilton. Less competition has led to higher costs and less funding for needed infrastructure. Research by the Cardus think tank confirms that the pool of companies allowed to bid on Waterloo Region projects has now shrunk by more than 80 percent. As a result, local taxpayers are charged up to 30 percent more for projects ranging from new bus stops and splash pads to hockey arenas.

“There’s nothing fair about shutting the vast majority of local contractors and their workers out of local projects,” added Reid. “Local politicians should be strong and vocal advocates of provincial labour law changes. Instead they’re making a bad situation worse by not speaking up on an issue that impacts every one of their constituents.”

PCA is the voice of progressive unionized employers in Canada’s construction industry. PCA member companies are leaders in infrastructure construction across Canada, employing more than 25,000 skilled construction workers who are represented primarily by CLAC.

For further information contact:
Danna O’Brien, danna@obriencommunications.ca 416-500-0699