Statement from state Rep. Sara Cambensy (D-Marquette) on efforts to repeal Michigan’s prevailing wage laws:

Thursday, January 11, 2018
State Rep. Sara Cambensy (D-Marquette) speaks to workers in support of Michigan’s prevailing wage laws at a rally at the Capitol in Lansing on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018.

LANSING — “I stand with my colleagues and Governor Snyder in Lansing in recognizing that we have a severe shortage of skilled tradesmen and women in our state right now.  The worst thing we could do to rebuild our skilled workforce is repeal prevailing wage. 

“But there is another important reason why I stand firmly behind prevailing wage. As one of the most fiscally prudent Marquette city commissioners for the past five years, I support the city's ordinance that mandates that any job performed over $65,000 must use prevailing wages. The reason an ordinance like this makes sense is to guarantee that the work being done using taxpayer dollars is performed by contractors with a competent, trained workforce. Construction mistakes are costly and there is nothing I hate seeing more than wasted taxpayer dollars. Skilled workers are the key ingredient to making sure that the job gets done right, on time and with minimal change orders and mistakes. 

“To me, this isn't a partisan issue. This isn't a union issue, as prevailing wage is an average paid wage per skilled trade taken per county from both union and non-union workers. This is a common sense issue that's about being responsible with taxpayer dollars. We don't hire low-skilled and unskilled workers to fix our own homes. As collective owners of our city, county and state infrastructure, we shouldn't either.”