The Building Tradesman Newspaper

Friday, April 27, 2012


By The Building Tradesman

Shorty Gleason to run for state House seat

Patrick “Shorty” Gleason, a former union leader well known to Michigan’s construction industry and a current Genesee County Commissioner, announced his campaign for state representative on April 9.

Running as a Democrat, he will be facing Pam Faris in the August 7 primary for the party’s nomination. A Republican challenger has not yet been announced. Gleason is running to serve Michigan’s 48th District, which is currently held by State Rep. Richard Hammel (D-Mt. Morris,) who is leaving due to term limitation.

Prior to his election as a Genesee County Commissioner, Gleason was president of the Michigan Building & Construction Trades Council. A former iron worker, he also served as president and business agent for Iron Workers Local 25.

Gleason served 16 years as a Richfield Township trustee. He was also quite active in numerous construction industry associations and agencies, including the Michigan Infrastructure & Transportation Association, the Michigan Occupational Safety & Health Administration’s Construction Safety Standards Commission, the Michigan Council For Labor & Economic Growth, and the Michigan State AFL-CIO Executive Board.

At a press conference announcing his candidacy Gleason said he was entering the race because of the budget problems that have impacted local government, especially in the areas of state revenue sharing cuts, cuts to public education, and declining property values.

“There’s nothing more important than the bread and butter issues of putting people back to work,” Gleason said.

At the press conference Zane Walker, current president of the Michigan Building & Construction Trades Council, said the council was endorsing Gleason’s candidacy. (From Michigan Construction

Make your mark on labor petition

Building trades union members are urged to contact their local unions and sign the Protect Our Jobs petition, a drive that’s seeking to collect at least 322,609 signatures by July.

The petition drive and subsequent statewide vote on Nov. 6 are seeking to permanently place pro-worker language directly into the Michigan Constitution.

Such a change would overturn a number of anti-worker laws already adopted by the state Legislature, and permanently end future proposals like adopting a right-to-work law in Michigan. Garnering a sufficient number of signatures would place the issue before voters on Nov. 6.

Petitions are available to be signed by registered voters at most local union halls. Call first to assure availability.

McGarvey elevated to BCTD president

At an April 16 special meeting of the AFL-CIO Building Trades Department’s Governing Board of Presidents, Sean McGarvey was unanimously elected President of the Building and Construction Trades Department.  McGarvey had been secretary-treasurer, the No. 2 man at the department. The Governing Board also unanimously voted to confer the title of President Emeritus on former President, Mark H. Ayers, who died of a heart attack on April 8. 

The governing board deferred a decision to fill the position of secretary-treasurer.