The Prevailing Wage Act is an Illinois state
law that applies to all public construction projects regardless
of whether or not the awarding agency has an RBO - the RBO simply reiterates the law, assuring
that the contractor hired will follow the law.
But the answer to this
question is no - studies have shown that paying prevailing wages
does not increase the overall construction cost of a given project.
“Data from numerous state-level studies on
public construction costs show no evidence that lower prevailing
wages and benefits reduced construction costs charged by contractors
performing public works. Lower prevailing wage/minimum wages
paid to workers have no measurable impact on public construction
costs partly because wage declines lead to offsetting declines
in productivity. Further, real savings in public construction
costs are more likely to come from investments in worker training,
which can make workers more productive, thereby lowering costs
without cutting wages.”
- Professor Robert Bruno,
Director of Labor Studies, Associate Professor of Labor and
Industrial Relations - University of Illinois
Very few contractors will opt to not bid on work covered
under an RBO, and the ones that do, are usually not ones you would
want on the project anyway. Lawabiding contractors that adhere
to Illinois contracting laws and desire a fair, competitive bidding
landscape will welcome the presence of an RBO.
We’re aware of none that can’t! Any public taxing body should
adopt an RBO, from the State of Illinois, down to the smallest Soil & Water Conservation District.
If you’re reading this website, you’re already started. The
process of actually adopting an ordinance can vary greatly.
You may need to present the idea to a board or council members
for a vote. Whatever the process, please know that we are
here to help provide information to you and whomever will
be making this decision. We have presentations, brochures and a video available. Please
don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions, materials, or assistance
you may need.