Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
Davis Bacon Act (DBA) wage determinations (WDs) do not contain every craft needed for all DBA work performed on every contract. When this occurs DBA provisions contain a conformance procedure for the purpose of establishing a DBA-enforceable wage and benefit rate for missing job classifications. CFR 29 Part 5.5(a)(ii) sets the criteria that must be met to obtain a rate for an unlisted classification.
Contractors are responsible for determining the appropriate crafts necessary to perform the contract work. If a classification considered necessary for performance of the work is missing from the WD, the contractor must initiate a request for approval for a proposed wage and benefit rate.
Generally, the contractor initiates the request by preparing an SF-1444 , Request for Authorization of Additional Classification and Rate, at the time of employment of the unlisted craft. (Reference Title 29 CFR Part 5, Section 5.5(a)(1)(ii) and FAR 22.406-3). The contractor completes blocks 2 through 15 on the form. Requests may be submitted without the form, but must contain the required information.
- Contractors must request employees, if present, or their designated representative, to sign block 16 noting the employee's concurrence or disagreement with the contractor's proposed wage and benefit rate. A statement supporting a recommendation for different rates may accompany any indication of disagreement. The "designated representative" may be a union representative; however, it cannot be the contractor's representative or personnel officer.
- The contractor submits the completed SF-1444 to the contracting officer. The contracting officer reviews the form for completeness, and signs the agency's concurrence or disagreement with the contractor's proposal. A statement supporting a recommendation for different rates may accompany any indication of disagreement.
- The contracting officer then submits the request to DOL for approval. The contractor must pay the proposed wage and benefit rate pending response from DOL. When DOL responds to the contracting officer, the contracting officer provides a copy of the response to the contractor with instructions to provide each employee a copy or to post it in the work area (with the applicable WD). The prime contractor must provide a copy of the determination to subcontractor(s), if any, that may employ workers in the conformed classification under the contract. If DOL denies the request or responds with an approved rate that is higher than the rate proposed by the contractor, the contractor must pay the applicable rate retroactive to the start of performance of that craft. The contracting officer should request written confirmation from the contractor that this liability has been paid in full.
Appeals of the approval or disapproval of a conformance request should initially be made with the Branch of Construction Wage Determinations in the National Office of WHD. If the requestor wishes to appeal the Branch decision, then a request for review and reconsideration may be made to the Wage and Hour Administrator (See CFR 29 Part 5.13 and Part 7). The Administrator's decision may be appealed to the ARB. All decisions by the ARB in such cases are final.