Davis-Bacon and Prevailing Wage Laws Are Empowering Careers for the Disadvantaged Worker
LCPtracker, Inc. Urges United States Policy Makers to Look at the Facts
Orange, CA -- (SBWire) -- 01/30/2017 --Today, there is a new and more compelling reason to keep Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage laws. The unexpected result of Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage laws is that they are empowering careers for the American disadvantaged worker. With advances in technology and the laws requiring government agencies to collect wage and worker data, local communities are taking advantage of this data to ensure their worker hiring programs are successful with transformative statistical results. What occurred is not only could government agencies track wages, but they could also track the type of people they hired who normally did not obtain those jobs.
Inner cities are struggling economically and unemployment is running rampant in minority segments of our society. Cities and public agencies are responding with workforce hiring programs on public works construction projects. These workforce programs set goals for contractors to hire local, underrepresented and economically disadvantaged workers.
Prevailing wage and Davis-Bacon laws have enabled these workforce programs to gain visibility and transparency through the requirement of certified payroll reporting. The reports have proved to be an invaluable tool for tracking workforce goals since information about worker gender, ethnicity, and zip codes must also be submitted. This dramatically increases the visibility of these targeted workers and highlights how hiring them has transformed local economies. Technology has allowed statistical tracking, giving transparency to each program's success and spotlighting areas that still need improvement.
In 1931, the Davis-Bacon Act sought to protect both federal construction workers and the public from greed driven contractors. Thirty states have also passed prevailing wage laws that accomplished the same mission in local communities. The purpose of these laws was to create an equal playing field for bidders so that contractors compete based on skill, productivity and safety instead of low bids through paying workers below-the-poverty-line wages.
Unfortunately, Davis-Bacon has recently been accused of escalating construction project costs and now is in danger of being repealed. Constituents of the movement against Davis-Bacon allege that removing prevailing wage requirements can reduce 20% of construction costs. Applying basic math demonstrates the impossibility of this claim.
Construction project costs average nationally 23% labor and 77% material. Studies have shown that, on average, the prevailing wage rate is 17.5% higher for any given craft and classification; however, research has also shown the jobs are also completed 20% faster due to higher productivity. The improved productivity by the more skilled worker offsets paying the higher prevailing wages per hour.
To save 20% on a construction project labor rates would have to average at least 80% higher on prevailing wage projects.
Repealing Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage laws would be detrimental. It would result in lost federal tax revenue of $5.3 billion as contractors who do not pay prevailing wages also pay less taxes. And, equally important, there would be far less jobs for disadvantaged American workers.
Mark Douglas, President and CEO, LCPtracker, Inc.: "To say eliminating Davis-Bacon will result in a 20% reduction of costs would mean labor would have to be around 3% of the total construction costs. Ask yourself, can any construction project be delivered with 97% material and 3% labor?"
"Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage laws offer opportunities for women, minorities, veterans, the homeless, the economically disadvantaged, single custodial parents, those with criminal records, those who are chronically unemployed, those with no GED or high school diploma, and those receiving public assistance to obtain jobs."
"Davis-Bacon and prevailing wage laws are about creating jobs--jobs that transform people's lives and break the cycle of poverty. Because once you take one person out of poverty, you lift up their entire family, and all the generations to come."
#Construction industry and compliance experts, #LCPtracker, urge policy makers to support #DavisBacon
#DavisBacon and prevailing wage laws are about creating jobs--jobs that transform people's lives and break the cycle of poverty. #LCPtracker
- To read the latest op-ed from LCPtracker CEO, Mark Douglas: http://www.lcptracker.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/empowering-communities-and-careers-in-america.pdf?sfvrsn=2 or to review the costs in a hypothetical $1 Million Project Example: http://www.lcptracker.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/1-million-dollar-project.pdf?sfvrsn=4
- Learn more about LCPtracker solutions: www.lcptracker.com
About LCPtracker, Inc.
LCPtracker, Inc. is a leading software service provider specializing in construction site compliance related software, located in Orange, CA. The main solution, LCPtracker Pro, is a powerful web-based SaaS solution for collecting, verifying and managing certified payrolls and other labor compliance related documents. Our products are available for both desktop and mobile applications. Over 200 government agencies and 200,000 contractors have used LCPtracker for their certified payroll reporting. As a long-standing trusted partner, LCPtracker works closely with government agencies and contractors assigned to public works construction projects.
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