Taylor Bridge Fire Reconstruction Legislation in Washington Stat - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Taylor Bridge Fire Reconstruction Legislation in Washington State House

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KNDU.com -- Months after wildfires set parts of Central Washington ablaze,13th District representatives are looking to speed up and reduce the costs of rebuilding.

Reps. Matt Manweller and Judy Warnick introduced House Bill 1249  to temporarily suspend the prevailing wage for public projects involved in reconstruction after the Taylor Bridge fire.

Current state law requires employees of public work projects to be paid prevailing wages.
Prevailing wage is determined by the Department of Labor and Industries for each trade and occupation that is involved in a project at the cost of the state.

These wages are usually the same as those negotiated by construction unions which are well above market wages and eliminates competition in contracting and drives up the cost of construction projects.

If passed into law, the exemption would expire July 1, 2015.

The legislation must be scheduled for a vote by the committee in order to move forward. The 2013 session is scheduled to last 105 days.