Take note of prevailing wage, apprenticeship changes

Among the bills passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor during the recently concluded legislative session were these measures:

Prevailing-wage training

A bill (3SHB 1673) passed the Legislature that requires training in public works and prevailing wage to be a responsible bidder on public works. However, AGC secured an amendment so that it exempts bidders who have completed three or more public-works projects and have had a Washington business license for at least three years.

The training will be provided by the Department of Labor and Industries or by a third-party provider whose curriculum is approved by L&I. The length of the training will be determined by L&I in consultation with the Prevailing=Wage Advisory Committee (an AGC representative serves on the PWAC).

The bill takes effect July 1, 2019.

Prevailing-wage and collective-bargaining agreements

A second bill (SSB 5493) says prevailing wage must be established by adopting the hourly wage, usual benefits and overtime pay established in collective-bargaining agreements for those trades and occupations that have collective-bargaining agreements. For trades and occupations with more than one collective-bargaining agreement, the higher rate controls. For those trades that do not have collective-bargaining agreements, the prevailing rate of wage must be established by wage and hour surveys. If surveys are not feasible, the industrial statistician may use other appropriate methods.

The bill takes effect June 6, 2018.


Bill EHB 1849 requires public-works contracts to contain apprenticeship-utilization goals by cost value and, except for WSDOT contracts, monetary penalties and incentives for not meeting the goals; requires contracts to include specifications that a contractor or subcontractor may not be required to exceed the apprenticeship-utilization requirements; requires awarding agencies to monitor and report compliance by contractor and subcontractor to the Supervisor of Apprenticeship for verification.

The bill takes effect on January 1, 2020.


For more information, contact AGC Chief Lobbyist Jerry VanderWood, 360.352.5000.