gavel1 300MADISONVILLE (10/20/13) — In August, SurfKY published a letter to the editor written by Dr. William F. Smith, a Madisonville dermatologist and former member of the Hopkins County-Madisonville Public Library Board of Trustee.

Smith called into question what some have referred to as, "Kentucky's antiquated prevailing wage laws," which resulted in the library system being charged more than $97,000 in rates after an investigation by the Kentucky Labor Cabinet's Employment Standards Division into construction work at the library's East Center Street building.

Kentucky law (KRS 337.505 to 337.550) requires that public projects with an estimated cost of $250,000 or more pay construction workers the prevailing wage of the region in which the project is being built.

Smith questioned the basis of the prevailing wage law by its own control group foundation. In his letter, he alleged that determining wage data is collected and assessed at voluntary public hearings. The wage rates are established when 51 percent of the participating contractors are paid the same wage. "The majority of participants in these hearings are organized union workers, so the wage determinations consistently default to union wages, despite the fact that union workers comprise only a small minority of the work force," he wrote.

Dave Adkisson, president of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, offered the chamber's view on prevailing wage versus economic growth in an opinion piece recently shared with SurfKY.

Adkisson states the Labor Cabinet's method of determining prevailing wage does not reflect local construction wage. It is instead, "an inflated union wage," wrote Adkisson.

"The Kentucky Chamber strongly urges the General Assembly to repeal the state's prevailing wage law as it drafts the 2014-1016 budget," wrote Adkisson. "This move would save taxpayers millions of dollars every year; money that would be far better spent meeting the critical needs of our citizens especially educating our children."

Adkisson referred to a Legislative Research Commission report that concludes that labor costs are increased 17 to 24 percent per project due to the prevailing wage law, which affects projects like roads, school construction and renovation, bridges and public water and sewer construction.

Adkisson also called for Gov. Steve Beshear and members of the state legislature to "bring Kentucky's financial house in order," as preparations are being made for the state's 2014-2016 budget during the 2014 General Assembly, and, "to modernize the prevailing wage law by enacting recommendations from the LRS study ensuring prevailing wages established in a local community represent actual local wages."

Rita Smith Dukes
SurfKy News

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

1 DOW 18,011.94
-28.43 (-0.16%)    
2 S&P 2,109.60
-2.13 (-0.10%)    
3 NASDAQ 5,076.52
-6.41 (-0.13%)    

Most Read This Week

May 27, 2015 7408

VIDEO: Sparks Fly Over Hanson Rezoning Issue

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
May 30, 2015 7034

Study of Virus Attack on Cancer Sees Success

by Julie Heflin
May 28, 2015 6520

Four Charged with Burglary for Entering Elderly…

by SurfKY News
May 27, 2015 4257

Midnight Ride on Rabbit Ridge Ends in Jail

by SurfKY News
May 27, 2015 3789

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - May 27, 2015

by Crime Stoppers

Most Read This Month

May 15, 2015 11318

New Madisonville Business In Full Operation Soon

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
May 23, 2015 9326

Missing 5-Year-Old Boy Found

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

June 01, 2015 1441

Authorities Discover Meth Lab While Assisting…

by SurfKY News
May 31, 2015 1364

Hopkins District Court Fines Handed Down

by SurfKY News
June 01, 2015 1216

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports Released -…

by SurfKY News
May 31, 2015 1085

Survivors, Caregivers, Supporters Gather for…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
June 01, 2015 981

Human Relations Coordinator Identifies Possible…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
June 02, 2015 920

Two Muhlenberg Women Injured in Collision

by SurfKY News
June 02, 2015 807

Hopkins County Misdemeanor Indictments

by SurfKY News
June 01, 2015 784

Dawson Springs Police Reports Released

by SurfKY News
June 02, 2015 746

Woman Charged with Falsely Reporting Kidnapping

by SurfKY News
May 31, 2015 737

Muhlenberg County High School Holds 2015…

by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News