Proposed Changes in Labor Regulations Could Significantly Increase Worker Pay

    A flood of money is about to hit the construction industry, thanks to the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that President Joe Biden signed into law late last year. Perhaps not surprisingly, then, the U.S. Department of Labor is updating the rules determining worker pay on federal construction jobs, first set by the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act, which tied the size of paychecks to prevailing local wage rates.

    Labor law firm Fisher & Phillips outlines some of the major changes in a post on its website, including:

    • A return to an earlier, more worker-friendly formula for calculating prevailing wages
    • More frequent updates to rates
    • Stricter contractual obligations and reporting requirements for contractors and subs
    • Anti-retaliation protections for workers

    According to an article penned by another law firm, Washington, D.C.–based Adams and Reese, “It is likely that the proposed change will be approved.” The Davis-Bacon Act applies, the firm notes, to about 1.2 million U.S. construction workers.