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Big wins for the building trades

The following story appears in the Washington State Labor Council’s 2018 Legislative Report (HTML or PDF) published in May.

Building and construction trades workers scored some major legislative victories in 2018. The following were all signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee:

●  SB 5493, prime sponsored by Sen. Steve Conway (D-Tacoma), establishes prevailing wage rates on public works projects based on collective bargaining agreements. Already done in eight other states, this practice will provide more accurate and consistent pay rates and save the state money by replacing the current cumbersome survey process, which incentivizes employers to under-report wages. It passed the Senate 32-15 (see Vote #3) and the House 53-45 (Vote #12).

●  SB 6126, sponsored by Sen. Rebecca Saldaña (D-Seattle) and supported by the IBEW, requires completion of an apprenticeship program to receive a journey level electrician certificate of competency. It passed the Senate 43-6 (Vote #17) and the House 62-36 (Vote #9).

●  HB 1952, sponsored by Rep. Brian Blake (D-Aberdeen) and also supported by the IBEW, permits cities that conduct electrical inspections to enforce electrical licensing and certification requirements. It passed the House 96-0 and the Senate 45-4.

●  HB 1672, sponsored by Rep. Noel Frame (D-Seattle), is a bipartisan bill to “stop the clock” on the deadline for workers to recover wages owed to them under prevailing wage laws. It passed the House 98-0 and the Senate 38-11.

●  HB 1673, sponsored by Rep. Beth Doglio (D-Olympia), requires training in public works and prevailing wage standards to qualify as a responsible bidder. It passed the House 63-35 and the Senate 31-17.

●  HB 1849, sponsored by Sen. Mike Sells (D-Everett), strengthens enforcement and compliance of the state’s apprenticeship utilization standards. It passed the House 97-0 and the Senate 37-12.

●  HB 1953, sponsored by Rep. Laurie Dolan (D-Olympia), raises penalties for health-and-safety violations in the state (WISHA) to be at least what is charged by the federal government (OSHA). It passed the House 53-45 and the Senate 26-22.

Click here to see more reports from the Washington State Labor Council’s 2018 Legislative Report. Or download the entire 8-page PDF.

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