eNews - April 19 2011
Engineers Action and Response Network (EARN) and IUOE put pressure on Representatives to avert Davis-Bacon amendment
Labor won an important battle recently, as conservative Republican Pete Sessions of Texas proposed an amendment in the House of Representatives to strip Davis-Bacon* coverage from all federally assisted airport construction. Every Democrat present supported Davis-Bacon, the 1931 federal law enacted to require prevailing wages on public-works projects.
The Davis-Bacon Act ensures that bottom-feeding contractors must compete for public works contracts on a level playing field with IUOE Union contractors while supporting the quality of life and living standards of members of the IUOE.
A highway and transit bill, which will directly impact our livelihoods, may be considered over the next couple of months, and we can anticipate yet another attack on Davis-Bacon during that debate. Our Union's ability to work with politicians on key issues won us this victory, and we should be commended for these efforts. While we won by a 238-183 margin (winning the support of 51 Republicans, an increase of three from an earlier February vote), our work is far from over. We must be ever-ready to continue the fight to protect our livelihoods.
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* The Davis–Bacon Act of 1931 is a United States federal law which established the requirement for paying prevailing wages on public works projects. All federal government construction contracts, and most contracts for federally assisted construction over $2,000, must include provisions for paying workers on-site no less than the locally prevailing wages and benefits paid.