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W.Va. GOP eyes repeal of prevailing wage law

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — When the new Republican majority takes over in the next legislative session, some lawmakers hope to roll back West Virginia’s longstanding prevailing wage law.

“It should be eliminated across the board,” said state Sen. Craig Blair, R-Berkeley.

Blair has been a critic of West Virginia’s prevailing wage law and was among several Republicans seeking its repeal last year.

With the GOP holding a majority in both chambers, which is enough to override a veto by the governor, West Virginia’s prevailing wage law may see some changes.

The law, which has been in existence since the 1930s, requires a wage set for all workers, such as carpenters, painters and electricians, on construction projects to ensure that all receive a uniform pay rate and benefits for the type of work they perform, according to the Department of Labor website.

The department sets the wages by performing an annual survey of both union and non-union contractors.

Critics say the method of determining the prevailing wage is faulty.

“The way the labor department manages the surveys is totally inaccurate,” said Chandler Swope, co-founder of Swope Construction…

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