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Compliance Deep Dive: Certified Payroll

Prevailing Wages & Wage Decisions

A wage decision is a list of pay rates and fringe benefit amounts for each classification of mechanic and laborer for which the Department of Labor (DOL) has determined to be prevailing in a given area for a particular type of construction.

There are nine possible wage decisions, and the applicable decisions will be included in the contract. Wage decisions are not interchangeable and are based on the county where the work is being performed. Covered workers are those that do manual labor on a project.

Should you need an additional classification and rate, please complete DOL Form 1444 - Request for Authorization of Additional Classification and Rate.

Guiding Regulations & Documents

Read CDOT Chief Engineer's Memo on Adherence to Employee Pay Regulations

Davis-Bacon and Related Acts (DBRA)

This law requires prevailing wage (minimum), fringe benefits, and pay every seven days for the work being done. DBRA is monitored and enforced by CDOT.

Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)

FLSA covers overtime and the workweek and is enforced by US DOL. Anyone complaining under the governance of FLSA will be referred to US DOL. Most complaints are about travel time. Any travel time (company truck, travel to
project on job is FLSA, not DB) beyond a normal home to work will count towards the 40 hours.

Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act (CWHSSA)
CWHSSA deals with overtime which is enforced by CDOT. This law requires all hours over 40 in the work week must be paid at 1.5 times the base rate of pay. It is not limited to project hours but on the worker’s total hours in a week. Fringe is paid hour for hour. The consequences of non-compliance can include fines, imprisonment, or both. This act covers watchmen and guards.

Copeland Act

The Copeland “anti-kickback” act of 1934 regulates the deductions from an employee’s paycheck allowed - enforced by CDOT. Deductions by law, taxes, and health benefits are allowed. Other deductions that benefit the employee may be
allowed, but no deductions are allowable that reduce the wage below the contract minimum wage (Davis-Bacon wages on federal projects). After the close of the project, there is a three-year retention requirement for all project documents.
Damages could be up to $5000 and five years of jail time.