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President Signs Bipartisan Bill to Increase Efficiency Under Davis-Bacon Act

Today President Obama signed into law the Streamlining Claims Processing for Federal Contractor Employees Act (H.R. 2747). Introduced by Subcommittee on Workforce Protections Chairman Tim Walberg (R-MI) and Ranking Member Joe Courtney (D-CT), the bill moves responsibility for wage claims adjustments for federally-contracted workers from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to the Department of Labor.  

“I want to thank the president for his support of this commonsense, bipartisan proposal,” said Chairman Walberg. “By working together we’ve provided greater efficiency within the federal government. Just as important, we’ve helped ensure workers employed by federal contractors receive the pay they’ve earned in a more timely manner. I hope we can build on this success and discuss additional reforms that will serve the best interests of the nation’s workers and taxpayers.” 

“I am pleased to see that President Obama has signed this commonsense bill that improves efficiency and streamlines the claims process for workers,” Rep. Courtney said. “Once enacted, this law will enable federal workers to get the pay that is owed to them in a timely fashion. I want to thank Chairman Walberg for his efforts on this issue, and I look forward to finding additional common ground to enhance protections for America’s workers.”

Under the Davis-Bacon Act, federally contracted workers must be paid the “local prevailing wage” on government projects. The Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act (CWHSSA) requires federal contractors to pay workers one and one half times their basic rate of pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours. While the Department of Labor enforces these laws, GAO has long been responsible for processing claims of workers who did not receive the appropriate wage. Since it no longer provides this service in other areas of the federal government, GAO has requested this authority be moved to the appropriate enforcement agency. 

The Streamlining Claims Processing for Federal Contractor Employees Act transfers this responsibility to the Department of Labor, which oversees other aspects of the Davis-Bacon Act and the CWHSSA.  

To read full text of H.R. 2747, click here

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