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Press Releases - County Council

For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Bill would help local workers and local contractors compete for the County's public construction projects

ROCKVILLE, Md., Oct. 12, 2021 — Today, Council President Tom Hucker and Councilmember Will Jawando introduced legislation that would expand Montgomery County’s prevailing wage requirements and adopt Maryland’s prevailing wage law regarding the contract threshold limit. Bill 35-21 Prevailing Wage Requirements – Construction Contracts – Amendments is co-sponsored by Council Vice President Gabe Albornoz and Councilmembers Evan Glass, Craig Rice, Sidney Katz and Hans Riemer. 

The legislation aims to expand the prevailing wage requirements to include additional County financed construction projects to match the State’s lower prevailing wage threshold limit. It would also include service contracts that have been previously excluded from prevailing wages, apply prevailing wages to certain public-private partnerships and include a local hiring mandate to increase jobs locally in the County. 

"By helping our local workers and contractors compete for our own public construction projects, this bill will create more middle-class jobs with benefits, reduce demand on our social services, incentivize excellent apprenticeship training, and expand workforce and economic opportunities for young adults, including residents re-entering the workforce, in Montgomery County,” said Council President Hucker. 

"This bill will ensure those who work in construction and allied trades have the opportunity to earn a living wage when working on projects that will benefit Montgomery County residents," said Councilmember Jawando. "This isn’t complicated. When county taxpayer dollars are invested in building schools or fixing streets, these hard working folks deserve a living wage.” 

Bill 35-21 is similar to existing legislation found in the surrounding jurisdictions of Anne Arundel County and Baltimore County and would align recent changes in Maryland law governing the disbursement of funds from the Build to Learn Act. Under Montgomery County’s current prevailing wage law, contractors of construction projects are excluded from the prevailing wage requirement if the threshold limit reaches $500,000. The State of Maryland’s threshold for prevailing wages was recently lowered to $250,000, which would expand the number of workers who will qualify for the prevailing wage. The bill would also broaden the definition to include service contracts related to construction that provide ongoing maintenance to existing facilities to upkeep equipment, components, or systems. 

A public hearing for this bill is tentatively scheduled for Nov. 2, 2021 at 1:30 p.m. 

The staff report on this bill can be found here.


Release ID: 21-396
Media Contact: Sonya Healy 240-777-7926, Lucia Jimenez 240-777-7832
Categories: Gabe Albornoz, Tom Hucker