The Bureau of Public Work is responsible for enforcing New York State's prevailing wage laws, which are found in Articles 8 & 9 of the Labor Law.
On the first of July each year, the bureau publishes the annual wage schedule. Links to this year's schedule and an archive for prior years can be found below.
We also handle underpayment complaints made by employees on public work and covered projects. After receiving a complaint, we conduct an investigation to determine whether or not the contractor or subcontractor has paid the proper prevailing rate of wages and supplements. In addition to the repayment of wages, offenders may also be assessed interest and penalties. Willful violations of prevailing wage laws may also result in debarment from being able to bid on public work projects.
New York workers are essential to public work projects, so we at the Bureau of Public Work are here to protect you.
NYS Debarred List (PDF) & NYS Debarred Database: The NYS Debarred List contains individuals and entities that have been debarred for violations of Articles 8 and 9 of the Labor Law, as well as for violations of the Workers' Compensation Law.
Federal System for Award Management: The U.S. General Services Administration allows you to search the status of business entities.
For Article 8 (Construction), the posted schedule must be capable of withstanding all weather conditions and have the title "PREVAILING RATE OF WAGES" in letters no smaller than two (2) inches by two (2) inches.
For Article 9 (Building Service), the schedule must be posted on or before the first day that work begins.
What is the difference between Articles 8 & 9?
New York State Labor Law Article 8 covers public work and certain private construction projects receiving public funds.
New York State Labor Law Article 9 covers building service workers employed by a contractor under a contract with a public agency that is in excess of $1,500.
What is Public Work?
A three-prong test is applied to determine whether a particular project is public work and subject to the prevailing wage requirements of Labor Law § 220 and article I, § 17 of the State Constitution. First, a public agency must be a party to a contract involving the employment of laborers, workmen, or mechanics. Second, the contract must concern a project that primarily involves construction-like labor and is paid for by public funds. Third, the primary objective or function of the work product must be the use or other benefit of the general public.
Who makes the determination whether a project is "Public Work"?
Generally, projects for construction, reconstruction or maintenance done on behalf of a public agency (entity) are public work. In instances where there is a question regarding whether this condition exists, the Bureau of Public Work will make a determination based on the project details.
What is considered a Public Agency?
A Public Agency is the State, any of its political subdivisions, a public benefit corporation, a public authority or commission or special purpose district board appointed pursuant to law, and a board of education.
How does the DOL determine which rate applies to a particular task?
The Bureau of Public Work looks at all factors, including:
- Nature of the work
- Collective bargaining agreements
- Jurisdictional agreements
- Jurisdictional decisions
- Historical practice
- Past DOL recognition
- Case law precedents
If you have additional questions, please see out additional FAQs for Article 8 and article 9 of Public Work.
Contact us at [email protected], or use button below to find the closest public work district office: