Common Challenges in Negotiating Community Benefits Agreements

& How to Avoid Them

January 2016

More than a decade of work in the community benefits movement has yielded a number of important lessons about common challenges facing CBA coalitions and how they may be avoided.

Absent strong, authentic, and diverse community representation and commitment to negotiating legally enforceable agreements that meet community needs, the community may not realize the full potential of the approach.

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This guide includes case studies, checklists, charts, and resources for individuals and organizations interested in moving community benefits campaigns forward in their jurisdiction, and who want to learn more about the pitfalls and indicators of potentially harmful CBAs. It provides:

  • Principles for Effective CBAs
  • Indicators of Potentially Weak CBAs
  • Case Studies on Ineffective and Harmful CBAs
  • Charts Breaking Down and Comparing the Elements of Strong and Weak CBAs

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