Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Retraction of Previously Published Prevailing Wage Rates

The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries announced major changes in the new prevailing wage rates that will become effective on September 2, 2009, and that were published earlier this month.

L&I previously published revised wages on August 3, 2009, with an effective date of September 2, 2009. Since the original publication, L&I has published two corrections (for residential sprinkler fitters in Douglas County, effective on September 4, 2009, and for metal fabrication-in shop in Jefferson County, effective on September 5, 2009).

Approximately one third of the wage updates in the August 3, 2009 publication (or 22 crafts) were based on data from prevailing wage rate surveys conducted by L&I. Other changes were based on changes in collective bargaining (union) agreements.

A number of industry stakeholders contacted L&I with concerns about the accuracy of some of the survey data. As a result, L&I will be publishing new prevailing wage rates on August 24, 2009, which will still be effective on September 2, 2009. The new wage rates will delete all of the changes previously published on August 3, 2009 based on survey data.

The survey data will be reviewed over the next six months, and appropriate changes will be published in February 2010.

In keeping the effective date of the wages to be published on August 24, 2009 as September 2, 2009 (less than the required 30 days after publication), L&I is exercising their emergency authority under WAC 297-126-011, in order to prevent questionable prevailing wage rates based on the surveys from going into effect.

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