Wednesday, December 14, 2016

State auditor issues report on workplace safety and prevailing wage compliance

(From State Auditor Nicole Galloway)

Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway has issued a report recommending improvements to a law designed to protect workers and ensure they are being paid a fair legal wage for work on public projects. The report raises concerns with the complaint investigation process, worker safety, and notification requirements included in the state's prevailing wage law.

"When we invest in our state through projects that add jobs to the economy, we expect it to be done right the first time. That requires the work of individuals with specialized skills and the right training for the job," Auditor Galloway said. "Missourians should in turn receive a fair wage and a safe job site, and that's what this law was intended to do. My audit identifies a number of weaknesses and recommends corrective action to improve the law and its administration."

In fiscal year 2016, the state received 219 complaints related to potential violations of the law. Of those, 24 were not investigated due to staff reductions as a result of budget cuts, including at least one allegation of underpaid wages. About half of the complaints received were not entered into the state's complaint database, which limits investigators' ability to search for patterns or identify high risk employers with multiple prior violations. Adding to that risk, the part of the law designed to protect workers from unsafe job conditions has limitations that hinder its enforcement.

The report also highlights gaps in project notifications. The law requires public entities to notify the Department of Labor prior to starting work on a construction or other public works project, but there is no enforcement and the requirement is often ignored. More than half of the projects reviewed did not have a notification form on file. The notification provides important information to the department about the project, and entities who do not comply with this requirement have been shown to have higher rates of non-compliance in other areas as well.

The Prevailing Wage Program is administered by the Missouri Department of Labor's Division of Labor Standards. A complete copy of the report is available here.


Unknown said...

Prevailing wage and Davis-Bacon hold our State back in economic development.
Right after the tornado in Joplin in 2011, it could have been waived by the Governor; but was not , and the Joplin community suffered.

Ben Field said...

Harvey is full of comments, albeit ignorant ones. Prevailing wage laws prevent contractors from using unskilled labor to complete work that may endanger the public safety. The law guarantees a fair wage paid to the workers on a project by the hour, not by the day as previously allowed. That day might be 12-14 hours depending on the prick you worked for. Congress put the Davis-Bacon Act into law because of abusive employers, Harvey wants that again. The Governor, contrary to Harvey's ignorance, cannot suspend federal law. The tornado caused the suffering, not the Governor. Harvey can't even get elected to city council because of his ignorance on display here.

Anonymous said...

Ben Field:

You don't know it, but you're being racist. As AFL President William Green testified before the Senate while it was being considered, "colored labor is being brought in to demoralize wage rates." Such an unforgivable abuse by those employers!

Bottom line is that unions are a conspiracy of some workers against others, and their day in the US is just about over in the private sector because our's got too greedy.

And too often corrupt, sometimes murderously so. I vividly remember from my childhood the 1969 murder of Jock Yablonski, who was challenging the United Mine Workers leadership, and his wife and daughter, and closer to home less than a year later, one John Galt (really) who was driving a truck filled with explosives when some local Teamsters who were on strike against Tri-State Trucking thought it would be great fun to shoot at his rig. Left a big hole in I-44 as well....

There's reasons you're losing, and will almost certainly lose big in Missouri in the coming months.

Ben Field said...

@ 2:23

Union employees are trained in certified classes, DOL bases their standards on these classes. Employers no longer "demoralize" wage rates with "colored" labor, blacks are involved in unions as well. The new employers use illegals, which they pay poorly because of their lack of knowledge and because they can't complain lest they be deported. You have no knowledge of unions other than the propaganda which you read, so excuse me if I disregard your ignorance.

Unions are not over in the private sector, your Republican congressmen wish to allow anybody to join a union now without paying dues. That is the "Right to Work" law being considered. Sounds like the congressmen are encouraging freeloaders, that want the benefits of union training without paying dues. Save your "murderous" tall tales of union corruption for the children, they might believe such nonsense. One moron blows up a truck and all unions are involved? Get real.

Finally, if you think you can join the union without a competency test to determine your apprenticeship, work without training, find yourself at the bottom of the work list. If you think I will let you work without paying dues, be prepared for the worst position on the worksite. The federal prevailing wage law cannot be overturned by Missouri's Governor, you are mistaken. I cannot stand freeloaders, or morons that don't understand even how the 40 hour week came to be, so good luck with your job prospects.

Anonymous said...

Who needs skilled help or competent professionals?

these fools want to deregulate and tort reform everything!

Just slap that chit together and make 'Murrica just as effed up as China!

BEIJING: Chinese state media say a 13-storey apartment building under construction in Shanghai has toppled over almost intact, killing one worker. - June 27, 2009

Label that chit Ayn Rand Estates!