LANSING, Mich., May 11, 2022 — State Rep. Rachel Hood (D-Grand Rapids) announced legislation, HB 6099, that would require employers to pay a prevailing wage to employees who work on a renewable energy project to prohibit retaliation and provide remedies. The bill would ensure employees in the renewable energy sector receive fair and competitive wages and benefits. This significant and growing industry includes electric, steam, solar, water and wind-generated energy systems. Securing prevailing wages for renewable energy employees will deliver a multitude of benefits to the people of Michigan, including:

  •  Protect labor rights
  •  Proliferate state economic growth
  •  Accelerate Michigan’s attainment of our goal to eliminate coal power plants by 2035
  •  Ensure highest quality workmanship and professionalism of services
  • Preserve Michigan’s air quality and reduce our climate impact.

“The clean energy transition must be rooted in sustaining wages and strong labor standards that empower workers. As a union represented organization, Sierra Club supports prevailing wages for renewable energy projects. The time is now to put people to work building a clean energy economy that works for everyone,” said Tim Minotas, Sierra Club Michigan Chapter.

“The folks who work in renewable energy jobs build our worlds — they are our electricians, engineers, welders, technicians and tradesmen. They work hard to put food on their family dinner table. They work hard to create the infrastructure we’ll rely on for generations,” Hood said. “It is our job to work hard to make sure they are paid fairly and have job security. Not only do prevailing wages benefit hardworking Michiganders, it helps ensure quality workmanship that will grow our state’s economy and protect our future.”

Solidifying prevailing wage standards not only protects green jobs and the employees in those positions — it also makes Michigan greener. Michigan can be a leader in renewable energy, creating a cleaner, healthier environment, and ensuring workers get fair pay and can afford to provide for their families and spend money in their local economies.

“As we become more focused on renewable energy in our state, we need to make sure that the workers who build our communities can participate in the middle class, and don’t get left behind. Making sure that the workers on these projects receive the prevailing wage will ensure that they are compensated fairly for the jobs of the future,” state Rep. Regina Weiss, Secretary of the Michigan House Labor Caucus (D-Oak Park) said.