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OKLAHOMA PREVAILING WAGE

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON STATE PREVAILING WAGE

Whether you are just starting out as a prevailing wage contractor or just looking to keep yourself updated, we have compiled these resources about state prevailing wage. Here are the most common questions of prevailing wage contractors and workers to help expand your knowledge!

Through a 1995 court decision, Oklahoma invalidated its Prevailing Wage Law. Today, all public works projects contracted by agencies and offices in Oklahoma are ruled over by the federal Davis-Bacon and Related Acts (DBRA). Enforcement, compliance and investigation on public works projects are handled by the federal Department of Labor.

Because it falls under the Davis-Bacon Act, there are strict obligations and requirements for public works contractors when it comes to prevailing wage. Compliance to such requirements is necessary to avoid penalties and to maximize business with the government.

Read on for the frequently asked questions on prevailing wage in Oklahoma.

How can I know the current prevailing wage rates for Davis-Bacon jobs in Oklahoma?
The federal government’s Department of Labor determines the prevailing wage decisions in Oklahoma. These determinations are based on the hourly work rate paid to a majority of workers, depending on classification/type of work, and nearest market or locality.

The current Davis-Bacon rates in the state of Oklahoma are regularly published and updated in this website, which contains a list of all the prevailing wage determinations for Oklahoma. There are instances where a determination doesn’t actually suit the prevailing wage job. Always refer to the bid spec to make sure that you are using the correct wage determination for the particular trade classification.

Wage determinations are required to be contained within the bid documents.

What are the filing requirements for prevailing wage jobs in Oklahoma?
For prevailing wage jobs in Oklahoma, you are required to complete and submit Certified Payroll Reports weekly. Note that some contracting agencies and offices can ask for additional paperwork. To know if there are any additional filing requirements for your project, confirm the paperwork with the contracting agency.
Where and how should sub-contractors and contractors file their paperwork?
Sub-contractors are required to submit their paperwork to the General Contractor of the public works project. The General Contractor is the party responsible for submitting the paperwork, including the paperwork of the sub-contractor, to the contracting agency.
What are my obligations for prevailing wage jobs with unlisted or missing classifications?
For unlisted or missing classifications that are not yet defined by a special prevailing wage determination, you are obliged to pay no less than the wage and benefit rates for the most similar specialized trade listed on the general wage determinations.

Take the scenario where you are a carpentry contractor. If “carpentry” is not listed in the general wage determinations, you can use the prevailing wage for a similar specialized trade, such as plumbing, as a marker for your payroll. You cannot pay lower than that trade.

After you are issued a special wage determination, you need to correct your payroll if the given determination is higher than the pay you had issued.

Where do I request a Special Prevailing Wage Determination in Oklahoma?
The officer or the contracting agency should request for a special prevailing wage determination from the Wage and Hour Division of the US Department of Labor. There is a specific conformance procedure provided for in the Davis-Bacon Act, which outlines an enforceable wage and benefit rate for missing or unlisted classifications.

The agency should complete Standard Form 308. The completed SF-308, or “Request for Determination and Response to Request”, should then be sent to the Branch of Construction Wage Determinations, Wage and Hour Division, Employment Standards Administration, of the US Department of Labor, Washington DC 20210.

These project decisions are applicable only to the project for which they were issued. They are also effective only for 180 days; they become void and invalid if they have not been used within this time period. The contractor should initiate the request by completing the form SF1444, or “Request for Authorization of Additional Classification and Rate” and sending it to the contracting agency.

Requests for special determinations take at least 30 days.

Are there any increases or special determinations for my Davis-Bacon project?
General wage determinations are valid for the entire duration of the project, and they also do not have pre-determined increases. On the other hand, special determinations are specific to a job and can include pre-determined increases.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OKLAHOMA PREVAILING WAGE FROM ARCHER JORDAN

Compliance with the Davis-Bacon Act is strictly enforced in Oklahoma. The contracting agency hires DBRA inspectors to conduct on-site inspections, interviews, and payroll record audits to ensure compliance. Any extreme errors would prompt the Department of Labor to intervene, especially if the contractor refuses to maintain compliance.

Refusing to maintain compliance or failure to follow the procedures would mean penalties for you as a contractor. With ARCHER JORDAN, you can ensure compliance with these regulations and you can be more confident in the smooth flow of your project.