Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Davis-Bacon Act Requires Weekly Pay to Workers

The federal Davis-Bacon Act, adopted by Congress in 1931, is the foundational law requiring payment of federal prevailing wage rates on federally funded public works construction projects.

Weekly Pay Required:  One of the provisions of the Davis-Bacon Act that many public agencies, contractors, and subcontractors are not aware of is that it requires that workers be paid "at least once a week."  

Cash Flow Problems for Contractors:  The weekly payment provision frequently causes conflicts, especially for smaller contractors and subcontractors who may not have the cash flow available to pay their workers on a weekly basis.  Nevertheless, contractors and subcontractors working on federally funded projects must comply with this provision.  

Contracting Strategies:  Contractors bidding on projects subject to federal prevailing wages must factor weekly payment to workers into their bid.  Sometimes a contractor may agree to help a subcontractor with cash flow by paying the subcontractor on a weekly basis in exchange for a discount of the subcontract amount.  

Monitoring by Public Agencies:  Public agencies are required to monitor weekly payrolls submitted by the contractor and subcontractors on federally funded construction projects, and should specifically check payrolls submitted to ensure workers are being paid weekly.

Applicability of Federal Prevailing Wages:  Read my earlier blog entry.

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