Survey confirms Davis-Bacon prevailing wage scheme’s inflationary impact

Sources: Associated Builders and Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff The Department of Labor’s flawed method of calculating “prevailing wages” under the 91-year-old Davis-Bacon Act adds at least 7.2 percent to the cost of federal and federally assisted construction projects and inflates wages by 20.2 percent compared to local market averages, according to a new report from the Beacon Hill Institute,…

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Feds revisit Davis-Bacon prevailing wage math, calculation methods

Sources: U.S. Department of Labor; Associated Builders and Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff The Labor Department Wage and Hour Division (WHD) will soon open a public comment period for its formal Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, “Updating the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts Regulations” (DBRA). Regulatory changes outlined will improve WHD’s ability to administer and enforce DBRA labor standards on federally funded…

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Renewed Davis-Bacon support permeates White House, Capitol Hill

Sources: U.S. Department of Labor, Ironworker Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust, Washington, D.C.; CP staff A White House Spring 2021 regulatory update, coupled with a U.S. Senate vote on a Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) Act amendment, illustrate administrative and legislative branch underpinnings for contentious statutes affecting construction: the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts (Davis-Bacon or DBRA). 

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Davis-Bacon enforcement nets bridge deck contractor crew $92K

Sources: U.S. Department of Labor; CP staff

Idaho Falls, Idaho-based JM Concrete Inc. has paid $92,290 in back wages to 27 carpenters, drivers, general laborers and power equipment operators who performed work on the Lorenzo Bridge Rehabilitation, a $1.8 million contract on State Highway 20 in Jefferson and Madison counties. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators cited Davis-Bacon Act violations when they determined that the contractor failed to pay crew members prevailing wages and fringe benefits and issue paychecks weekly.

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Feds speed access to Davis-Bacon prevailing wage data

Sources: Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division; National Electrical Contractors Association, Bethesda, Md. 

The Labor Department is launching https://beta.sam.gov to succeed the www.WDOL.gov website for wage determination data under the Davis-Bacon Act, plus Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) guidelines. Features of the new site include:

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Lawmaker trains on Davis-Bacon prevailing wage calculation

Sources: Associated Builders & Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

Adding to an early-2017 bill targeting the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act, Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) has introduced The Opportunity in Federal Construction Act (S. 1200), which directs the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to use Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data to calculate prevailing wages for federal and federally assisted construction projects. A BLS data method would replace the current practice of relying on the DOL Wage and Hour Division to calculate Davis-Bacon-bound job wage levels.

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Hearing calls for infrastructure outlays, GOP budget hawks target Davis-Bacon

Sources: Associated Builders & Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) and Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) have introduced companion bills in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate to repeal Davis-Bacon Act prevailing wage requirements in federally funded highway construction.

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Federal court denies claim of Davis-Bacon provisions on private project

Source: Associated Builders and Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

In a decision limiting the scope of a federal statute widely criticized for inflating public construction project costs, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Judge Amy Berman Jackson rejected the U.S. Department of Labor’s ruling that the Davis-Bacon Act prevailing wage mandate can be expanded to include privately funded developments.

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