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Michigan restriction of project labor agreements upheld in federal court

LANSING (WKZO) -- A state law which restricts the use of union-friendly project labor agreements in state construction projects is upheld by the federal appeals court.

In an opinion released Friday, the U. S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals overruled U. S. District Judge Victoria A. Roberts ruling that Michigan's Fair and Open Competition in Governmental Construction Act violated the National Labors Relations Act.  Project labor agreements, or PLAs, which are used on federal public projects, set labor terms and conditions for big construction projects, and often incorporate terms from collective bargaining agreements of the unions involved.

PLA opponents say it discourages non-union contractors from bidding and increases costs, but supporters say it reduces labor disputes, which prevents delays and cost overruns.

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