Company Closures/Contractor Job Losses Imminent if Governor Signs A-805/S-972
Bill Cripples Private Companies that Hire Non-Union Workers in Disadvantaged Communities
PAULSBORO, NJ – July 15, 2020. In the midst of the pandemic, while passing COVID-19 spending bills to keep small and mid-sized businesses in operation, NJ Assembly and Senate legislators also voted through an anti-business bill. A-805/S-972 mandates that high-risk manufacturers, such as refineries and chemical plants, hire union building and construction workers to complete work currently done by non-union contractors and subcontractors.
“If signed, the bill prevents private companies from hiring contract company workers who are qualified and work safe, and who they trust and have worked with for decades,” shares Mike Murphy, owner of M.P. Murphy Industrial Contractors, LLC. Business organizations including the NJ Chamber of Commerce, the African American Chamber of Commerce, the Chamber of Commerce of Southern New Jersey (CCSNJ), and the Chemistry Council of New Jersey (CCNJ), which represents many of these private petrochemical manufacturers, all testified against the bill earlier in the year and were surprised at its quick passage in the end of June.
“The premise of the legislation is to ensure that workers at our facilities are properly trained and possess the necessary skills to do the work. We can reassure you that before any contractor is allowed to step foot on our company properties and perform work for us, they must have the most up to date work skills training and health and safety training,” CCNJ’s Executive Director Dennis Hart expressed in a letter to the Governor. “CCSNJ opposes any employer mandate that removes the ability for a business to make the best overall business decision for their company – and, unfortunately A-805/S-972 does just that in a high-risk industry where a certain amount of flexibility is needed,”
shared Hillary Chebra, CCSNJ’s Government Affairs Manager in a statement posted on the organization’s website.
Kenny Atlantic, another contractor company in Paulsboro, NJ, that has long employed trained laborers to work at these manufacturing companies, will also face closing should the bill gets signed. “Over the years, I’m proud to say that Kenny Atlantic has provided family-sustaining employment to more than 3000 individuals, a number of these are “second chance” employees,” notes Manager Andy Green. “If Governor Murphy signs this bill, he’ll be undoing all of the recent progress the state has made to keep small- and medium-sized, and minority-led businesses, afloat. That would be hypocritical and counter-productive. It also harms efforts to right the racial inequalities in the state, as this bill mostly impacts minority workers in economically depressed areas such as Linden, Paulsboro and Salem,” he added.
Weiss True Value Hardware is one local supplier in Paulsboro that stands to be impacted. “Should the Governor sign this bill, all of the local residents that work for these companies would be unemployed. This directly relates to them not having the money to spend at any of the remaining small businesses like ours here in Paulsboro,” shares Manager Phil Weiss.
“Plain and simple, this is an overreaching union-building bill in our right-to-work state. It steals one qualified and experienced person’s job to employ another,” Mike Murphy notes. “It increases private companies’ costs and decreases productivity by hiring more expense and less familiar union workers to complete skilled tasks that trained non-union workers have done safely for years. I urge concerned citizens to contact Governor Murphy and ask him not to sign our jobs away,” he concludes.
This community action platform aims to raise awareness of New Jersey citizens whose lives will be negatively impacted should A-805/S-972 be signed into law. This legislation is neither about safety nor training.
All contractor employees must have proper safety and skills training before they are allowed to work at high-risk manufacturing sites. This legislation will hurt minority businesses and employees. The potential company closures and job losses are not limited to the contractor companies noted, but extend to the hiring manufacturers as well as suppliers, vendors, shops, and restaurants that these contractor companies and their employees support. The platform urges New Jersey’s citizens to contact Governor Murphy and ask him not to sign A-805/S-972.
To learn more, visit www.dont-sign.com.