KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- The Unified Government's Board of Commissioners will vote on a resolution that will formally protest a bill passed by the Kansas Legislature that bans local governments from paying prevailing wage on economic projects.
During the 2013 Kansas Legislature session, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed a bill that banned local governments from requiring privately-owned construction businesses from paying prevailing wages.
Below is the text of the resolution commissioners will vote on Thursday night.
Unified Government Protest to the State of Kansas Prohibiting Use of Prevailing Wage
WHEREAS, the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City supports paying prevailing wage on
public works projects and economic development projects where tax incentives are given; and
WHEREAS, prevailing wage fits the nature of our community and is supported by our citizens; and
WHEREAS, prevailing wage has encouraged economic development in Wyandotte County, not hurt it; and
WHEREAS, the Unified Government is recognized as one of the most business friendly local governments in the Kansas City metro; and
WHEREAS, Wyandotte County has used prevailing wage as a successful economic development tool which has transformed our community into a regional tourism and manufacturing center; and
WHEREAS, economic investment in Wyandotte County is nearly $2-billion from 2008-2013, with most of those projects paying the workers building them prevailing wage; and
WHEREAS, Wyandotte County has recently been ranked first in the Kansas City metro and 19th in the nation for job growth, with thousands of new jobs are being created by the businesses and tourist attractions investing in Wyandotte County; and
WHEREAS, payment of prevailing wage benefits the economies of Wyandotte County and the State of Kansas by giving workers more income to spend on purchases large and small, supporting local businesses and generating increased tax revenues; and
WHEREAS, the nearly $2-billion in investment and thousands of jobs created are benefiting not only Wyandotte County, but the entire State of Kansas; and
WHEREAS, the Kansas Legislature passed and Governor Sam Brownback signed a law prohibiting the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas City from requiring prevailing wage on public works and economic development projects; and
WHEREAS, the law prohibiting use of prevailing wage is an unnecessary and unwelcome intrusion by the State of Kansas into local affairs and violates the spirit of Home Rule for cities which has been enshrined in the Kansas Constitution for 60 years; and
WHEREAS, Governor Sam Brownback and many members of the Kansas Legislature say they believe in small, limited government and object to the Federal government meddling in State of Kansas decisions and policies, but frequently themselves meddle in the decisions and policies of local governments;
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF THE UNIFIED GOVERNMENT OF WYANDOTTE COUNTY/KANSAS CITY, KANSAS:
That the Unified Government Board of Commissioners respectfully requests and strongly urges the Kansas Legislature and Governor Sam Brownback to repeal the law banning the Unified Government of Wyandotte County/Kansas from implementing policies requiring the use of prevailing wage on public works and economic development projects.