Once again this year, Albany lawmakers are seeking to impose prevailing wage on private construction projects receiving most forms of state or local financial support. And once again this year the Buffalo Niagara Partnership is helping fight back against this job-killing proposal.
New York State is home to some of the highest construction costs in the country. The state’s prevailing wage and scaffold laws are two reasons why. That is why the Buffalo Niagara Partnership calls for Scaffold Law reform and opposition to the expansion of prevailing wage in our 2018 Advocacy Agenda.
The 2017 New York State Legislative session ended with little legislating, and that is not a bad thing for Buffalo Niagara employers. Compared to the busy and extended budget negotiations earlier this year, the end of session seemed sedate (As I write this, Governor Cuomo has called the Legislature back to Albany to address a few outstanding issues, chief among them mayoral control of New York City schools). Here are the highlights:
As part of our Government Affairs programming, we kicked-off our first of two Capital Conversation events for 2017 with a look at New York’s prevailing wage mandate and its impact on taxpayers and economic development. E.J. McMahon, founder and research director of the Empire Center came to Buffalo to detail his new report: Prevailing Waste: New York’s Costly Public Works Pay Mandate. Our event coincides with an effort underway in Albany to expand the prevailing wage mandate by attaching it some private projects.
A new report by the Empire Center confirms what many have believed for years – New York State’s prevailing wage law drives up construction costs as much as 25 percent, squandering precious tax dollars in the process.