Snyder Faces Contest Over Eliminating Prevailing Wage Law - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Snyder Faces Contest Over Eliminating Prevailing Wage Law

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - Governor Snyder is facing another potential confrontation with unions over GOP efforts to eliminate the state's prevailing wage law. Now, the unions want the governor to veto the bill if it gets to his desk, but he steadfastly has refused to make that promise.

Under current state law, when a contractor does work on publicly financed construction projects, they have to pay the prevailing wage in that area. Unions like the concept because it keeps wages up.

Some House republicans have listed the elimination of the prevailing wage is one of their top priorities for the new year. They contend contractors should be able to set their own wages.

"Some of the things I'm hearing from the other side of the aisle is if we get rid of prevailing wage jobs, it's going to cost less because we can have lower wages. That's what they want to do," said Rep. Rudy Hobbs.

In the wake of last year's union protest over Right-to-Work, unions have gone to the governor and asked him to veto the repeal of prevailing wage if it gets to his desk.

But in a recent meeting, the labor union advised the governor if he did not make the pledge, the unions would not provide democratic votes for the governor's transportation package.

The governor confirms the conversations, but doesn't want to talk about the linkage of those two issues.

 

 

"I have talked to different union leaders. They have a concern about prevailing wage and I understand what they are saying. I have not taken a position on that," said Governor Snyder. "I'm happy to have an on going dialogue on transportation. I want to get that done and if people want to bring up prevailing wage, that can be part of the dialogue, too."

 

"Business has been getting a break from this administration over the last two years. It's time to even this out between employees and employer," said Mike Mirgin, MSEA lobbyist.

The governor has said that the debate over all this is another divisive issue, which so far as not reached critical mass in the legislature.

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