January 2012

Don't blunder the benefits

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The Davis-Bacon Act includes a complex fringe benefit obligation

by Philip J. Siegel
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With the private construction market still slow, many roofing contractors either are performing work on government construction projects subject to the Davis-Bacon Act for the first time or considering doing so. And as a result of state law or federal assistance by grants or loans, including the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, many roofing contractors are learning state, local and county projects also may involve the requirement to pay prevailing wages in accordance with the Davis-Bacon Act.

Although you may be familiar with the requirement to pay prevailing wages on projects subject to the Davis-Bacon Act, complying with a fringe benefit obligation in the act proves more complicated.

The Davis-Bacon Act

Enacted in 1931, the Davis-Bacon Act protects local wage standards and gives local laborers and contractors a fair opportunity to participate in federal projects by preventing contractors from basing bids on wages lower than those prevailing in the area. The
Davis-Bacon Act requires prevailing wage rates, which are determined by the Department of Labor (DOL), to be paid to all laborers and mechanics who work on federal government construction projects...

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