Q How do I know if the project I am working on is covered by Prevailing Wage?
A Contractors and subcontractors on all projects that are covered by the Federal Davis-Bacon Act or The Michigan Prevailing Wage Act are required to post a Davis-Bacon Poster (WH-1321) at the site of work, along with the correct Wage Schedule in a prominent and accessible place. If you believe that the project you are working on is covered even though there is no posting, contact the project engineer or your employer and ask if the project is covered by Prevailing Wage. If so ask for a copy of the wage schedule.
Q How do I know that I am getting paid for the correct work classification?
A Your correct work classification is determined by the work you perform, not the title you are given.
Q My work on the project requires that I operate construction equipment part of the day and work as a laborer the rest of the day. What rate should I be paid?
A Under the scenario, the employer must split up the employee’s time into two categories (Laborer and Operator).  Both have different hourly wages and benefits, and the worker and employer should be “generally” aware of the amount of the time spent conducting each activity within practical reason.
Q What should I do if I am not getting the correct rate on a Prevailing Wage job?
A

First, talk with your employer. Tell him/her that you are not getting the correct pay and try to resolve the issue. If that fails, you can file a claim with the contracting agency for recovery of underpaid wages. It is very important that you keep accurate records of your hours worked, work performed and pay received. ALWAYS KEEP YOUR PAY STUBS! Any claim for back wages must be filed before the project is closed (paid in full) by the contracting agency.

You may contact The Michigan Fair Contracting Center for assistance with your claim. (see contact info page)

Q I am paid the required hourly rate but I do not receive any benefits. Should I be paid the value of the benefits in addition to my hourly rate?
A Yes. Prevailing Wage Laws require that you be paid the value of the “Total
Package” which is the value of the hourly wage plus the value of any benefits that are not provided (paid) by your employer.
Q I am classified as an apprentice. What rate of pay should I receive?
A

Prevailing Wage Laws allow the use of apprentices at their agreed upon non-prevailing wage. However, in order for workers to recognized as apprentices on prevailing wage, public works projects they MUST be enrolled in a “bona fide” apprenticeship program that is registered with the Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training, under the U.S. Department of Labor.

PERSONS NOT REGISTERED IN A RECOGNIZED PROGRAM MAY NOT
BE PAID LESS THAN THE JOURNEYMAN PREVAILING WAGE.
(29 C.F.R.- 5.2 (n) (1) )

Q What is a General Wage Determination?
A A General Wage Determination is the listing of wage rates and fringe benefit rates for each classification of laborers and mechanics which the Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor has determined to be prevailing in a given area for a particular type of construction (e.g., building, heavy, highway, or residential)
Q What is a Project Wage Determination?
A A project wage determination is issued at the specific request of a contracting agency; it is applicable to the named project only; and expires 180 calendar days from the date it is issued unless an extension of the expiration date is requested by the agency and approved by the Wage and Hour Division.

©2005, Michigan Fair Contracting Center. All Rights Reserved.