Re: Construction Employers Urge NO Vote on King #23, Rooney #64 Amendments on Davis-Bacon Prevailing Wage

July 26, 2017

U.S. Representative
U.S. Capitol Building
Washington, DC  20515

Re:  Construction Employers Urge NO Vote on King #23, Rooney #64 Amendments on Davis-Bacon Prevailing Wage

Dear Representative:

On behalf of the Construction Employers of America and our seven member associations, we urge you to oppose Rep. Steve King’s (Amendment #23) and Rep. Francis Rooney’s (Amendment #64) amendments to H.R. 3219, the “Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2018”. Congressman King’s amendment and Congressman Rooney’s amendment would eviscerate local and regional prevailing wage laws that protect American workers, undermining our country’s long-standing and effective prevailing wage law, commonly known as “Davis-Bacon.”

As you may be aware, regional prevailing wages ensure that employees are paid a fair wage based on calculations from a survey of local market wages and benefits paid to construction workers without regard to their union or non-union status. It's fair, it’s transparent, and it's working for the American people, as it has for the past 85 years. The King Amendment and the Rooney Amendment would prohibit the implementation, administration, and enforcement of prevailing wage laws that have protected and supported American employers and employees for decades.

Put simply, Davis-Bacon protections raise the standard of living for all Americans. For over 80 years, Davis-Bacon prevailing wage requirements have ensured that companies pay fair wages and labor receives fair compensation for their work based on regional wages. Prevailing wage safeguards have proven sound construction procurement policy, ensuring project success by respecting and adhering to prevailing workforce standards and wages. Davis-Bacon discourages artificially low bids that undercut high workforce standards. Artificially low bids frequently lead to claims, disputes, and project delays. Established industry and project owner practices in both the private and public sectors recognize that high workforce standards delivery superior project outcomes. Prevailing wage standards also promote using local labor forces for public works projects.

Construction Employers of American once again urge you to vote against the King Amendment #23 and the Rooney Amendment #64 and defend local prevailing wage laws. The Construction Employers of America, our member associations, and our 1.4 million employees nationwide appreciate your leadership. CEA members include FCA International, the International Council of Employers of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, the Mechanical Contractors Association of America, the National Electrical Contractors Association, the Sheet Metal & Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association, the Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, and The Association of Union Constructors.

Thank you,

Jack Jacobson