In recent months, there has been much discussion and debate over San Diego’s decision to implement prevailing wage law even though it is a charter city. A charter city is a city that operates with its own “constitution,” or charter. This, in effect, allows the cities to create their own laws and essentially govern itself in the confines of the state legislature. Citizens of the city can then choose to abide by prevailing wage law or not. There are seven cities in San Diego County, aside from San Diego whose charter dates back to 1887, that have recently become chartered mainly to avoid having to pay prevailing wage.
But what is prevailing wage?
Simply put, prevailing wage is when a base pay rate is established by state and federal law to ensure that all construction workers engaged in public works projects are paid adequately for the craft they are working in. This allows for construction workers to be paid an adequate livable wage. Prevailing wage has been proven to show that there are less injuries on the job site and adds better quality workmanship to the projects. Essentially, it makes the worker feel and perform at their best.
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