Prevailing wages are the wages required to be paid on state-funded construction projects. Wage rates are certified once a year in both highway/heavy and commercial-type construction. Minnesota’s prevailing wage law (Minnesota Statutes 177.41 through 177.44) requires employees working on public works projects be paid wage-rates comparable to wages paid for similar work in the area where the project is located.

Compliance Tips

  • If an employer pays less than the prevailing wage, DLI requires the employer to pay back wages to the worker to make up the difference. DLI can also require the employer to pay penalties for failure to comply with the prevailing-wage law.
  • The prevailing wage rate will depend on the type of work the worker is performing.
  • Commercial construction prevailing-wage rates must be paid on state funded building projects, including state-owned buildings, colleges and schools.
  • Highway/heavy prevailing wage rates must be paid on state-funded public works projects, including highways, roads, airport runways, bridges, power plants, dams and utilities.