Labor helps contracting officers find wage data online

Tuesday - 7/5/2011, 2:45pm EDT

By Courtney Thompson
Federal News Radio

The Government Printing Office (GPO), the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) and the Department of Labor are providing access to current and archived wage determinations for federal service contracts in a permanent online database.

The Federal Acquisition Regulation's Wage Determination Online website provides a list of wage determinations issued by Labor on rates and fringe benefit rates for various laborer and mechanic classifications.

The wage determinations include the original as well as all subsequent decisions on changes to wage rates to help federal contracting officers with various contracting actions and provide information on labor standards. As a part of the e-government initiatives in the President's Management Agenda (PMA), WDOL.gov compiles individual contract information from 2000 to the present on wage determinations for the Service Contract Act (SCA) and Davis-Bacon Act (DBA).

Specifically, SCA provides standards on safety and health protection for service workers and prevailing compensation for service employees working for federal contractors or subcontractors in the District of Columbia and the federal government. SCA regulations require updating solicitations, awards or significant modifications to service contracts and compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act's rules for minimum wage payment for service contracts $2,500 or less and payment through wage determinations for pay and benefits for service contracts that exceed $2,500.

Additionally, DBA protects communities and workers from economic disruptions that occur from non-local contractor competition in an area and also directs Labor to stop the underbidding of local wage levels for federal contracts. The amended DBA requires that service contracts for more than $2,000 contain information about minimum wages payments for all laborers and mechanics employed under a service contract.

NTIS updates WDOL.gov with Labor's changes to the SCA and DBA wage determinations. Labor maintains any additional information on the website along with help from the federal agencies of the PMA's Integrated Acquisition Environment-a collaboration between the departments of Commerce, Defense, Energy, Labor, the General Services Administration and the Office of Management and Budget.

Alternatively, WDOL.gov also provides contracting officers direct access to the Labor's "e98" portal to submit requests for SCA wage determinations that are not accessible on their website.

(Copyright 2011 by Federal News Radio All Rights Reserved.)

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Courtney Thompson is an intern with Federal News Radio.