The Prevailing Wage Act is intended to ensure a level playing field for contractors who bid on public works projects. In addition, the act prevents unscrupulous contractors from underbidding honest contractors by depressing workers' wages in order to submit a lower bid. It establishes a wage rate floor and takes workers’ wages out of competition. As such, government agencies are assured that low bids will reflect managerial and worker efficiency and skill.
Eliminating the prevailing wage would not directly result in lower taxes or increased savings for taxpayers. Weakening the prevailing wage only increases the likelihood of diminished work quality from unskilled workers. Project costs may even increase if contractors use unskilled, low-wage workers – especially if the project runs longer than expected or if the work is not done right the first time. Worse that damage to construction workers is the danger all citizens will face if the prevailing wage is eliminated. We all remember photos of dead school children and grieving parents in the aftermath of every serious earthquake in China. It has been revealed over and over again that he Chine government allowed unskilled workers and unauthorized substitution of materials in these schools. We have earthquakes and other natural disasters too. If we are serious about protecting our people – and particularly children – we must not abandon the prevailing wage.
I support responsible measures that would reduce costs for local governments, but I will still continue to fight against legislation that would harm the wages of Pennsylvania workers.