This week the House of Representatives approved, by a vote of 361-3, the Streamlining Claims Processing for Federal Contractor Employees Act (HR 6371). The bill would transfer responsibility for wage claim adjustments for employees of federal contractors from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to the Department of Labor (DOL) by amending the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA) and the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act (CWHSSA).
The DBA requires federal contractors to pay hourly workers the local prevailing wage on government projects. Additionally, the CWHSSA requires federal contractors to pay hourly workers one and one half times their basic rate of pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. DOL is currently tasked with overseeing the enforcement of these laws. However, an outdated policy puts the GAO in charge of processing claims by workers who claim they were not paid wages due under the DBA or the CWHSSA. The Streamlining Claims Processing for Federal Contractor Employees Act, should it become law, would allow DOL, not the GAO, to process these claims.