Prevailing Wage

Construction workers on a public works project have the right to the area prevailing wage.  Prevailing includes both a wage rate and a fringe (supplemental) benefit rate.  See the chart below for sample prevailing wage rates.  You can find more information on the NYS DOL website.  If you think you were underpaid on a job, please contact a NYFFC representative.
Classification
County
Wage
Supplements
Total
Carpenter
Heavy & Highway
Albany
$37.52 per hour
$23.80 per hour
$61.32
Laborer
Heavy & Highway
Albany
$37.19 per hour
$25.40 per hour
$62.59
Operating Engineer
Heavy & Highway
Albany
$49.42 per hour
$30.75 per hour
$80.17

Safe Work Environment

All workers are deserving of a safe work environment.  If you believe you are in immediate danger because of the conditions at your worksite, contact your local OSHA representative.  If you know or believe to be working with asbestos at a jobsite, you can also contact the NYS Asbestos Control Bureau.  You may also contact an NYFFC representative.

Discrimination and Harassment

A worker has the right to work free from discrimination and harassment. If you feel you’ve been the victim of discrimination on account of your race, gender, national origin, sex, disability, age, or other protected status, you may contact the NYS Division of Human Rights.  If you feel you’ve been the victim of sexual harassment at your workplace, you may contact the NYSDHR.

State and Local Procurement Laws

There are several laws currently in place that are important to understand when discussing responsible bidding.

General Municipal Law Section 103. Applies to political subdivisions across the state, including, but not limited to, cities, towns, counties, and villages.  GML Section 103 requires public bodies to bid out construction projects $35,000 of value and greater and award the contract to the “lowest responsible bidder.”  Responsible is not defined in the law but guidance can be found at the NYS Comptroller’s website. 

State Finance Law.  Applies to state bodies, such at the NYS Department of Transportation and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation.  Contractors wishing to do business with the State are also required to be “responsible.” Learn more about those rules here.

Concerted Action for the Benefit of Himself and His Fellow Workers

All workers, regardless of their current status as members of a labor union, have the right to engage in protected concerted activity at work.  Protected concerted activity means taking action, raising complaints, or otherwise engaging with management to improve the terms and conditions of employment for yourself and fellow workers.  If you think you’ve been retaliated against because of your protected concerted activity, you may contact the National Labor Relations Board at (716) 551-4931 (Buffalo) or (518) 816-0909 (Albany) or (718) 330-7713 (New York City).