Bush lifts wage rules for Katrina

Discussion in '2005 Archive' started by poncho, Sep 23, 2005.

  1. poncho

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    President signs executive order allowing contractors to pay below prevailing wage in affected areas.

    By Reuters

    09/09/05 -- WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Bush issued an executive order Thursday allowing federal contractors rebuilding in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina to pay below the prevailing wage.

    In a notice to Congress, Bush said the hurricane had caused "a national emergency" that permits him to take such action under the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act in ravaged areas of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi.

    The Davis-Bacon law requires federal contractors to pay workers at least the prevailing wages in the area where the work is conducted. It applies to federally funded construction projects such as highways and bridges.

    Bush's executive order suspends the requirements of the Davis-Bacon law for designated areas hit by the storm.

    Bush's action came as the federal government moved to provide billions of dollars in aid, and drew rebukes from two of organized labor's biggest friends in Congress, Rep. George Miller of California and Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, both Democrats.

    "The administration is using the devastation of Hurricane Katrina to cut the wages of people desperately trying to rebuild their lives and their communities," Miller said.

    "President Bush should immediately realize the colossal mistake he has made in signing this order and rescind it and ensure that America puts its people back to work in the wake of Katrina at wages that will get them and their families back on their feet," Miller said.

    "I regret the president's decision," said Kennedy.

    "One of the things the American people are very concerned about is shabby work and that certainly is true about the families whose houses are going to be rebuilt and buildings that are going to be restored," Kennedy said.

    SOURCE
     
  2. menageriekeeper

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  3. Joseph_Botwinick

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    My guess is that he is trying to save the taxpayers some money. That is merely a guess on my part. If this is true, I wish he would have consulted with me first, cause I could have helped him with that. What do you think?

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  4. poncho

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    Being in and around the construction trades for as long as I have I gotta wonder at the quality of the crew and their work that gets paid less than five bucks an hour to (re) build things.

    Most of the contractors I know around here cause themselves alot of needless problems and costs by not paying for skilled labor.

    But if Ted Kennedy is against it I reckon I should be all for it. ;)
     
  5. carpro

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    Great idea!
     
  6. Daisy

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    Paying poverty wages to desparate people - compassion conservatism at its best!

    Is it true that the contractors paying the wages have open-ended cost-plus deals?
     
  7. poncho

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    Sure they do Daisy they are called "extra work orders". That's the real way to make profits in a bidding situation. Bid low get the job and charge everyone else for making your work more difficult. I think New Yorkers probably perfected the system. ;)

    P.S. I'm a New Yorker. [​IMG]
     
  8. Grimlock Prime

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    LOL. yeah, I like to use Teddy *hic* Kennedy's responses on any given issue as a quick gauge o topics that I don't have time to properly research yet. If he's for something, the only person that it helps is him or the people who contribute to his campaigns. The louder he's against something tho, the better off the nation probably is. It's about 97% accurate so far.
     
  9. carpro

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    Nice rhetoric. :rolleyes:

    What proof do you have that workers will be paid "poverty wages" and exactly how much is that?
     
  10. poncho

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    Poverty wage to the average glazier with NYS prevailing wage is some where around 20 dollars hr. The wage varies from 25 to 30 dollars hr. Unless you happen to be in the city. Then you work five seven hr days and get paid fourty hrs at 40 dollars and up. Journeymen carpenters on the Island were getting 68 dollars hr last year in their union checks.

    The federal wage is some higher than that but I haven't got any real figures. I don't know about Lousiana but I imagine it works about the same.

    [ September 24, 2005, 11:46 AM: Message edited by: poncho ]
     
  11. carpro

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    You're kidding!

    $20 an hour is considered povery wages? :eek:
     
  12. Pastor Larry

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    The fact that a wage rule exists to begin with is problemmatic. At least Bush is doing something right financially, as bad as he is running up the debt right now.
     
  13. poncho

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    Yeah, I spent probably 10 of the last fifteen years working wage jobs. When you have to supply all your own hand and power tools, truck/fuel and the mileage and repair on it all (people supply their tools by stealing yours) add the four months a year with little work and the expences add up quick. 20 dollars hr in the paycheck can turn into 5 or 6 dollars take home if you are lucky and not having to drive to far, and work is never close to home.

    Eating expence also goes way up on the over the road motel curcuit.
     
  14. carpro

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    Amazing!

    I haven't been paid by the hour since 1967. I have never drawn a guaranteed salary. Never received unemployment when unemployed either. [​IMG]

    I'll take the $20 an hour right now.

    If I ever stop to figure out what my hourly rate has actually been, I'll probably shoot myself. :eek:

    Reckon I can get food stamps, rent assistance and other little tidbits like that retroactively? I figure the welfare system owes me a lot of money...based on $20 an hour. ;)
     
  15. poncho

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    I hear they are looking for people to rebuild a city not to far form you Carpro. State and Federal wage work is good money if you can find an employer willing to pay it. I've already had to take one company to court and threaten a few others. That's after I started subcontracting and getting paid by the job.

    I did finally get my pay three years later though, the last two companies I subcontracted for still owe me part of my pay.
     
  16. fromtheright

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    "I regret the president's decision," said Kennedy.

    I "regret" that Kennedy keeps getting re-elected.
     
  17. rivers1222

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    Never fails. When the subject of prevailing wages or wages for those in construction come up here, you never have to look at the profiles. You can tell the paper pushers from the people who have callouses on their hands just by reading their posts.
     
  18. carpro

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    Not always.

    But one doesn't carry any special knowledge or privilege over the other.

    With all due respect to Poncho, anyone that thinks that anything under $20 an hour is poverty wages, isn't living in the real world.
     
  19. poncho

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    I would have to disagree with this. Anyone that goes to work with a hardhat a set of prints and a hammer always knows more than the guy that estimated the job if the estimator hasn't spent his time swinging the hammer. What looks good on paper doesn't always work out so well in the field.

    I specified what I considered to be the poverty wage for a glazier in NYS. To me reality is, if it's costing me more to go to work than to stay home I'm not getting paid a wage I'm get paid debt.

    According to 2004 Annual Update of the HHS Poverty Guidelines $9,310 is the line for one person in 2004.
     
  20. Pastor Larry

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    How so? What exactly does this mean?
     

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