On Saturday, May 23, 2009, the Joint Finance Committee for the State of Wisconsin (“The Committee”) passed new regulations for prevailing wages on construction projects. The Committee approved a budget provision that requires construction companies to pay the prevailing wage on projects that are only partially funded with public dollars.
Currently, only contractors working on projects that are fully funded with public dollars must pay the prevailing wage. The Committee voted 12 to 4 (along party lines) to apply the requirement of paying the prevailing wage to private construction projects which receive public funding in excess of $1 million. The provision also lowers the threshold at which the prevailing wage obligation exists for public works projects involving multiple trades, from $234,000 to $25,000.
The Committee’s vote means that the prevailing wage proposal is now set for approval by the full Legislature and Governor Jim Doyle.