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In Massachusetts, the Supplier Diversity Program is a state program that encourages state agencies to award state contracts to certified diverse businesses. To qualify for the program, companies must be certified as a diverse business in any of the following categories:

Associated Builders and Contractors’ Construction Backlog Indicator declined to 8.4 months in January, according to an ABC member survey conducted from Jan. 22 to Feb. 4. The reading is down 0.6 months from January 2023.

On Feb. 9, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration sent its Worker Walkaround Representative Designation Process final rule to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget for final review. The rule would allow employees to choose a third-party representative, such as an outside union representative or community activist, to accompany an OSHA inspector into nonunion facilities. The review at the OIRA is usually the final step in the process before a rule is officially published in the Federal Register. ABC will be meeting with the OIRA to express its serious concerns about the rule.

The construction industry added 11,000 jobs on net in January, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On a year-over-year basis, industry employment has expanded by 216,000 jobs, an increase of 2.7%.

New data show that nearly 90 percent of U.S. construction workers choose not to join a union. In Massachusetts, it’s more than 82 percent, according to federal Bureau of Labor Statistics data analyzed by The open shop numbers are even higher among African-American construction workers. Yet once again we find ourselves fighting a union-only project labor agreement (PLA).

The construction industry will need to attract an estimated 501,000 additional workers on top of the normal pace of hiring in 2024 to meet the demand for labor, according to a proprietary model developed by Associated Builders and Contractors. In 2025, the industry will need to bring in nearly 454,000 new workers on top of normal hiring to meet industry demand, and that’s presuming that construction spending growth slows significantly next year.

An Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of 2023 state union membership data published by found at least 90% of workers in the private construction industry do not belong to a union in 29 states. That’s up from 26 states in 2022 and 24 states in 2021. Nationally, an all-time high 89.3% of construction workers are not part of a union, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, up from 88.3% in 2022.

ABC believes that the common good is best served by an open and competitive marketplace; that every company, regardless of its affiliations, has the right to compete free of coercion by any group or organization; and that every person must have the opportunity and right to work. Toward this end, ABC's mission is to foster an environment that ensures our members and their employees the ability to grow and prosper.

On Jan. 9, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division announced the final rule on Employee or Independent Contractor Classification Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, which rescinds the ABC-supported 2021 final rule and replaces it with a confusing multifactor analysis to determine whether a worker is an employee or an independent contractor. The final rule takes effect on March 11, 2024.

The construction industry added 17,000 jobs on net in December, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On a year-over-year basis, industry employment has grown by 197,000 jobs, an increase of 2.5%.