For Immediate Release: August 9, 2023
Contact: Matt Spence, 202-728-6014
IBEW Supports Biden-Harris Administration’s Rule Strengthening Davis-Bacon Prevailing Wages
IBEW International President Kenneth W. Cooper issued the following statement commending the Department of Labor’s final rule to update Davis-Bacon prevailing wage regulations:
"The Biden-Harris administration’s announcement updating Davis-Bacon is a victory for construction workers across the country. The rule, announced yesterday by Vice President Kamala Harris and Acting Department of Labor Secretary Julie Su, modernizes and strengthens the prevailing wage regulations. It is proof once again, that union members are at the heart of the Biden-Harris administration’s efforts to rebuild America by restoring the middle class.
"The final rule reverses Reagan-era changes that weakened the law's original intent – ensuring that federally funded or assisted projects support good-paying local jobs for local workers. For the past 40 years, a single low-wage contractor could depress wage rates on federal contracts. This rule change will allow construction workers to gain ground they lost in the 1980s, increasing the wages of millions and preventing low-road contractors from undercutting the workforce.
"The rule is especially significant given the major federal investments the Biden-Harris administration has made through the Inflation Reduction Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the CHIPS and Science Act, which will create hundreds of thousands of prevailing wage jobs for IBEW members. The IBEW applauds this historic achievement and looks forward to continuing to work with the Administration to ensure that federal investments support family-sustaining careers."
The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) represents approximately 820,000 members and retirees who work in a wide variety of fields, including construction, utilities, manufacturing, telecommunications, broadcasting, railroads and government.