HARRISON COUNTY, Ohio — Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) sent a letter urging the contractor for a new power plant in Harrison County, Ohio to work with Building Trades to hire local union workers for its construction.

“It has come to my attention that this project could be constructed with non-union trades and non-local workers. It is extremely important to me and all the Building Trades in the Ohio Valley that this work be performed by local union labor.”

Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH)

On Wednesday, the Harrison County Commissioners approved a six-month extension of their enterprise zone agreement with Harrison Power LLC.

Commissioners extend zone agreement with Harrison Power Plant

“The Building Trades unions have constructed two other natural gas power plants in Carrollton, Ohio and Wellsville, Ohio and the Cryogenic plants in Cadiz, Ohio and Scio, Ohio with local union labor. The experience and competence is clearly already here in Ohio. Additionally, local Building Trades unions create more work opportunities, achieve living wages, and protect benefit standards for all construction workers and should be a sought-after partner as much as possible.”

Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH)

Representatives of the Upper Ohio Valley Building Trades

“Many of our union brothers and sisters remain without work so we feel strongly that local labor should be used to construct the new Harrison Power Plant in Cadiz, Ohio. Hiring local supports the people who pay taxes and spend their money in and around Harrison County.”

Bill Davis, Business Manager of IBEW Local 246, on behalf of the Upper Ohio Valley Building Trades Council.

Ryan’s full letter can be found here and below:

April 19, 2022 

Colin Trebilcock
President
Gemma Power Systems, LLC 769 Hebron Avenue

Glastonbury, CT 06033

Mr. Trebilcock,

I write regarding the Harrison Energy Center (OH) in Cadiz, Ohio, of which your company was hired as general contractor by Advanced Power. As an elected official and Ohioan, I am pleased that the investment of a 1,085MW combined-cycle facility is being constructed in the Buckeye state. I have long been a proponent of an all-of-the-above energy policy of developing and using a combination of various resources to meet the energy needs of today and the future.

However, it has come to my attention that this project could be constructed with non-union trades and non-local workers. It is extremely important to me and all the Building Trades in the Ohio Valley that this work be performed by local union labor. Recently, I have learned that the building trades have been trying to reach Gemma to discuss a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) or National agreement to no avail.

The Building Trades unions have constructed two other natural gas power plants in Carrolton, Ohio and Wellsville, Ohio and the Cryogenic plants in Cadiz, Ohio and Scio, Ohio with local union labor. The experience and competence is clearly already here in Ohio. Additionally, local Building Trades unions create more work opportunities, achieve living wages, and protect benefit standards for all construction workers and should be a sought-after partner as much as possible.

Furthermore, hiring locally has many mutual benefits and the money stays within the community. Local businesses are what drives the local economy and the peace of mind in hiring a local contractor guarantees that paychecks and tax dollars are going back into the community where the project is located. Local contractors work in the communities they live in (or near) and are genuinely interested in the community’s financial and economical wellness– just as you are.

As a company that prides itself on core values and community engagement, I want you to succeed, but collectively and inclusive of the local building trades. The key to labor-management relations is teamwork, cooperation, and communication. I strongly urge you and your team to work toward an outcome that benefits the developer, the contractor and all the subcontractors. Please proceed with that goal in mind. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at your earliest convenience.