FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON STATE PREVAILING WAGE
Whether you are just starting out as a prevailing wage contractor or just looking to keep yourself updated, we have compiled these resources about state prevailing wage. Here are the most common questions of prevailing wage contractors and workers to help expand your knowledge!
Following the regulations relating to paying employees and contracting for public works projects should be a top priority for any contractor. Compliance with the regulations can ensure smooth business and better relations in the future.
Here are a few must-know information on prevailing wage in South Carolina.
The prevailing wage rates for Davis-Bacon public works jobs in South Carolina are determined by the US Department of Labor. Prevailing wage is based on the hourly rate paid to a majority of public works projects workers of a certain type of work/trade/classification, based on the nearest market area or locality.
It is important that you use the most current and also the most appropriate wage determinations. Always refer to the bid spec to ensure you are using the correct wage rates.
The wage determinations are a requirement within bid documents. If you cannot find the determination, contact your contracting agency.
For prevailing wage filing requirements in South Carolina, contractors are required to complete and submit Certified Payroll Reports weekly. Some South Carolina agencies can also ask for additional paperwork. It’s important to confirm the list of filing requirements with your contracting agency.
Sub-contractors for prevailing wage jobs in South Carolina should file all requirements with the project’s General Contractor. The General Contractor is the one who is responsible for submitting all documents, including the paperwork of the sub-contractor, to the contracting agency or office.
Under the Davis-Bacon rules, prevailing wage rates are good for the duration of the project, and there are no pre-determined increases. Special determinations requested by the contracting agency on a per project basis, on the other hand, have a different validity and may contain pre-determined increases. The request process takes at least 30 days.
For unlisted or missing classifications, you need to submit a Special Prevailing Wage Determination request. While waiting for the special determination to be issued, you have certain obligations under the Davis-Bacon Act.
You need to look at the published general wage and benefit rates for the specialized trade that is most similar to the trade of concern that is unlisted or missing in the list. You need to pay no less than the rate listed for that similar trade.
For example, you are a carpentry contractor, and carpentry is not listed in the general determinations. You can use the prevailing wage of a similar specialized trade, such as plumbing, as a marker for your prevailing wage. You must pay no lower than the prevailing wage for plumbing.
When the special determination has been issued, you need to correct your payroll if you paid lower than what was determined.
Obtaining a Special Prevailing Wage Determination on your public works projects is done through the request of your contracting officer or agency to the Wage and Hour Division of the US Department of Labor. There is a conformance procedure provided for in the DBRA. This outlines an enforceable wage and benefit rate for unlisted or missing classifications.
The agency should accomplish a standard form 308. The completed SF-208, or “Request for Determination and Response to Request” should then be sent to the Branch of Construction Wage Determinations, Wage and Hour Division, Employment Standards Administration, of the US Department of Labor, Washington DC 20210.
Note that project decisions are applicable only to that particular project for which they were issued, and they will only be effective for 180 days upon issue. The contractor needs to send a completed SF1444, or “Request for Authorization of Additional Classification and Rate”, to initiate the request.
South Carolina doesn’t have a requirement to request apprentices, a regulation on apprenticeship, nor a general training fund. However, if a contractor is contracted with a specific apprenticeship committee, they are bound to follow the apprenticeship regulations of that committee. They will also have to contribute to their training fund. Remember that apprenticeship wages are not part of the general wage decision. They are set by the specific apprentice.
Yes, there is an Associated General Contractors (AGC) branch in South Carolina. The AGC is an excellent resource to assist in the compliance of contractors with the Davis-Bacon requirements in South Carolina. You can refer to their website here.
LEARN MORE ABOUT SOUTH CAROLINA PREVAILING WAGE
Compliance with the Davis-Bacon regulations cannot be emphasized enough. The contracting agency for your public works projects is responsible for initial enforcement of compliance. The agency will hire inspectors who would conduct interviews, assessments and payroll audits to check if you are compliant with the regulations on prevailing wage jobs. Extreme errors or refusal to maintain compliance would lead to the intervention of the Department of Labor.
There can be dire consequences and penalties for non-compliance. To avoid such complications, work with a team that can help you pass smoothly through these regulations. With ARCHER JORDAN, you can conduct your business successfully and with full compliance with the law.