Common construction wage debate marred

March 28, 2015

Indiana’s common construction wage statute is being vilified in recent media releases using information that is almost laughably inaccurate. The releases espouse that public works projects such as schools, libraries, hospitals and the like can achieve savings of 20 percent by eliminating the common construction wage.

I am a public works contractor performing work in Indiana. We can all agree that the cost of wages on Indiana projects is approximately 30 percent of the total cost.

Taking a $1 million project, for example, 20 percent is $200,000, while labor is $300,000. To achieve this savings, wages would decline 67 percent. This savings would require wages to be $6.93 to $9.24 per hour—below minimum wage.

C. Lane Slaughter, president, Glenroy Construction Co. Inc.

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