The debate over prevailing wages in Michigan is still in full swing. The Detroit Free Press recently posted
an article housing multiple opinions on this hot topic. Amy Susalla, President of Detroit A&J Construction shared her thoughts with the press and is all for prevailing wages. She took the time to look into the University of Utah’s study from 2001 which did a statistical analysis of construction costs during a period when the prevailing wage law had been suspended in the 1990s and concluded there was “no statistically significant difference ( in cost ) between those public schools built with prevailing wages and those public schools built without this regulation.” Susalla further backs her beliefs with data from the Federal Highway Administration which found that states paying higher wages experienced lower costs overall with a 32% decrease in labor hours leading to savings of $30,000 per mile or more.
In addition to the strong data supporting her argument, Susalla points out the benefits of prevailing wage to Michigan’s recovering economy by providing higher paying jobs to local workers and ensuring that the most skilled and productive workers are on the job to provide a solid infrastructure that will ideally require less maintenance leading to lower long term costs.
How do you feel about prevailing wages in your state?