Under the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts and Reorganization Plan No. 14 of 1950, the U.S. Department of Labor is responsible for determining prevailing wages, issuing regulations and standards to be observed by federal agencies that award or fund projects subject to Davis-Bacon labor standards, and overseeing consistent enforcement of the Davis-Bacon labor standards.

The Davis-Bacon and Related Acts apply to contractors and subcontractors performing on federally funded or assisted contracts in excess of $2,000 for the construction, alteration, or repair (including painting and decorating) of public buildings or public works. Davis-Bacon Act and Related Act contractors and subcontractors must pay their laborers and mechanics employed under the contract no less than the locally prevailing wages and fringe benefits for corresponding work on similar projects in the area.

The Davis-Bacon Act directs the Department of Labor to determine such locally prevailing wage rates. The Davis-Bacon Act applies to contractors and subcontractors performing work on federal or District of Columbia contracts. The Davis-Bacon Act prevailing wage provisions apply to the “Related Acts,” under which federal agencies assist construction projects through grants, loans, loan guarantees, and insurance.

For prime contracts in excess of $100,000, contractors and subcontractors must also, under the provisions of the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act, as amended, pay laborers and mechanics, including guards and watchmen, at least one and one-half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 in a workweek. The overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act may also apply to DBA-covered contracts.

NOTICE: On March 11, 2022, the Department announced the publication of the proposed rule, “Updating the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts Regulations.” The Department proposes to amend regulations issued under the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts that set forth rules for the pre-determination of Davis-Bacon wage rates and the administration and enforcement of the Davis-Bacon labor standards that apply to federal and federally assisted construction projects. The comment period closed on May 17, 2022.


Online Training For Government Contracting Officials

The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) is pleased to announce that online training is now available to assist all federal, state and local contracting agencies with information on federal rules concerning prevailing wages and other labor law requirements. The training modules, presented by WHD staff and its federal agency partners, provide contracting officials with information on the process of obtaining wage determinations; adding classifications to wage determinations (conformances); compliance principles, and enforcement process under both the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA) and the McNamara Service Contract Act (SCA).

Specifically, two training modules are currently being offered online. A four-hour session for the DBA and a second four-hour session on the SCA. These training modules and accompanying PowerPoint presentations are available in their entirety at the following links: