(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Troy Singleton, Joseph Egan and Adam Taliaferro to bolster New Jersey’s prevailing wage system was approved, 68-2-2, by the Assembly on Thursday.
The bill (A-2863) sponsored by Singleton, Egan and Taliaferro requires every contract subject to state prevailing wage requirements to require each worker employed under the contract to be enrolled in, or have completed, a registered apprenticeship, unless the contractor or subcontractor certifies that the worker is paid not less than the journey worker wage rate.
“New Jersey’s prevailing wage law provides vital protections to workers, but we can always do more to ensure it is being applied correctly,” said Singleton (D-Burlington). “With this bill, we’ll take an important step toward further protecting workers and honest businesses from those who employ unscrupulous business practices that undermine fair and open competition.”
“New Jersey’s prevailing wage laws are designed to safeguard the workers’ efficiency and general well-being, and to protect them as well as their employers from wage levels that are detrimental to all concerned,” said Egan (D-Middlesex/Somerset). “With this tweak, we’ll be solidifying those goals and ensuring the law is always used as intended.”
“Prevailing wage is an important part of ensuring New Jersey workers are paid fairly and appropriately, and with this change, we’ll be making sure it’s used properly,” said Taliaferro (D-Gloucester/Salem/Cumberland). “Our prevailing wage laws must always be strong and sensible.”
The state’s prevailing wage law requires the payment of minimum rates of pay to laborers, craftsmen and apprentices employed on public works projects. Covered workers must receive the appropriate craft prevailing wage rate as determined by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development. Prevailing wage rates are wage rates based on the collective bargaining agreements established for a particular craft or trade in the locality in which the public work is performed. In New Jersey, these rates vary by county and by the type of work performed.
The bills were advanced by the Assembly Labor committee chaired by Egan on May 19. The bill now goes to the Senate for further consideration.