Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Trades Council Executive Secretary-Treasurer Dorsey Hager joined host Ed “Flash” Ferenc on America’s Work Force Union Podcast where they talked about Google’s latest datacenter project and the benefits of the New Davis Bacon Rules.
“Yesterday Google announced another $1.7 billion investment into Central Ohio to support the campuses they already have,” Hager said.
Google has three campuses either completed or under construction in Columbus, Lancaster and New Albany. Google is looking to build a fourth campus to increase its Central Ohio presence.
Hager added that these billion dollar investments are starting to add up and are drawing people to Central Ohio.
“I think Central Ohio is attracting people for a lot of reasons,” Hager said. “Central Ohio is a proactive place for business and the public universities and community colleges are producing a lot of people who can be trained to go into tech center jobs.”
Central Ohio continues to grow datacenters between Intel, Facebook, Google, and other tech giants who are rapidly turning the Buckeye state into their home.
“We’re very fortunate in Columbus and Central Ohio and the folks who live here are very fortunate because there are a lot of opportunities,” Hager said.
Hager switched topics and talked about the efforts Local Building Trades Unions in Central Ohio are making to expand their workforce.
A few years ago, companies were bringing workers from overseas to work on projects because there was a rumor that Ohio didn’t have the workforce to handle big projects, Hager said.
To prove the rumors wrong the building trades started investing in apprenticeship, pre-apprenticeship, outreach and recruitment to let people know how to get trained so they could be a part of the highly skilled workforce that is in Ohio.
Multiple Local Unions in Central Ohio have experienced a rapid increase in members and have built new training centers to better train their apprentices, according to Hager.
Locals are accepting more apprentices than ever before and are properly training their members to make sure the needs of their customers are being met in hopes that out-of-state workers will never be needed again.
Lastly, Hager discussed the New Davis Bacon Rules and what the new changes entail.
The federal law mandates that on-site workers be paid certain wages, benefits and overtime (also known as Prevailing Wage) on all government-funded construction projects.
“With all of these opportunities coming down the pipe for people, we want the building trades to be the leader,” Hager said. “I think it will benefit everybody, it will benefit the community, and it’s good for workers.”