Protesters representing Local 200 of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America have been picketing outside the Reynoldsburg City School District's administrative offices on East Main Street.

Protesters representing Local 200 of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America have been picketing outside the Reynoldsburg City School District's administrative offices on East Main Street.

Passing out flyers and waving banners, the group is protesting against the district's use of the Builtrite Interior Construction Co., currently working at the high school on East Livingston Avenue.

The picketers claim the company employs non-union workers, does not meet area labor standards for craft workers, and does not fully pay for family health and pension benefits.

The flyers ask residents to "call Reynoldsburg school Superintendent Steve Dackin to tell him to do all he can to change this situation and see that area labor standards are met for construction work on projects they are involved with."

District business manager Ron Strussion said the Reynoldsburg district is not required to hire union labor.

He also said the Ohio Schools Facilities Commission regulates what schools can and cannot do in these situations when hiring contractors for work on buildings.

"We bid it the way we were supposed to bid it, with the lowest bidder, and the cheapest ones aren't union labor," Strussion said.

"All I know is they're protesting because they're (Builtrite Interior Construction) not union carpenters I think they wanted them to join the union and they can't get them to join," he said.

Strussion said as long as the protestors are on public property, no one can do anything to remove them.

After repeated attempts, no calls were returned from anyone at Carpenters Local 200.

Jim Norwood, co-owner of Builtrite Interior Construction, said his company is a non-union merit shop that does meet area labor standards.

"We've got non-prevailing wage work guys from $15 up to $30 per hour working for us, but on prevailing wage work, we pay more and those guys make more money than the union carpenters because their pension goes into a 401K," Norwood said.

"We do quality work," he said. "We're a 100-percent American company. We try to do the right thing. It's just that we're not a union contractor, and they want us to be one."

Norwood said his company is not "anti-union" and said if his company were unionized, the prices it would have to charge would increase.

"If they wanted me to be union and if I could increase my prices by 25 to 30 percent just to be union, and everybody would accept my bid and I would still get the job, then that's fine," Norwood said. "But Reynoldsburg city schools doesn't want to pay 30 percent higher for my work, because that's what it would cost."