Prevailing Wage Kills Government Energy Insallation Jobs Program

The Better Government Association took a look something called the Urban Weatherization Initiative–a state government program whose goal was to train workers in manly African-American areas to identify and fix energy-inefficient homes.

Cutting utility bills for the poor seems to have been the selling point, beyond the jobs to be created.

The 2009 program is authorized to be financed by $435 million in bonds. [Fortunately, under $17 million has been spent so far.]

1,900 people have been trained, but they can’t find jobs.


Read this from the Chicago Sun-Times article:

Many of those who have gotten work through the program are being paid not at the $20-an-hour expected rate for these relatively unskilled jobs, but instead at the scale the state sets for skilled carpenters.

That’s because the program’s architects failed to recognize salaries would need to be in accord with the state’s Prevailing Wage Act, which doesn’t have a category for weatherization workers.

With each home limited to repairs of no more than $6,500, the inflated pay has eaten up moveny intended for the improvements.

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Another Pat Quinn-run program not working.


Prevailing Wage Kills Government Energy Insallation Jobs Program — 3 Comments

  1. Prevailing wage is killing many potentional jobs across the board for many reasons.

    Many small businesses do not even bid on those jobs, such as at municipalities’ projects.

    Another reason to get rid of Quinn, Madigan & their band of job killers.

  2. Tell it to the Prevailing Wage advocates — in the IL General Assembly and in all local government boards.

    I’ve been harping on this for a decade.

    Now do you get it?

    The market should dictate wages, not some artificially set union bought crony wage.


    Last I looked, the roads and schools in those states haven’t fallen apart.

    I hate saying it, but I can’t wait to move out of this death spiral state that’s been my lifelong home.

  3. McHenry County Board Members:

    Adopt a policy to SAY NO to any project which will cost more than 135% of National Average cost due to PW artificial inflation.

    We can’t afford it, we should not do it.

    You are the pilots of the ship that is this County.

    Pilots are trained on conditions which simulate approaching death spirals.

    Don’t you feel any obligation to develop skills in dealing with crisis conditions of your own making?

    Property taxpayers–that is, homeowners…citizens…the people you are supposed to be protecting…homeowners have no one to protect us from YOU.

    YOU make the spending decisions which create conditions from which no one can recover.

    Yes, YOU will individually be fine, YOU have the only parachute on the vessel (public pensions+COLA and pre-tax healthcare bennies worth 150% of what private citizens must pay post-tax).

    And you can rationalize that the passengers in your care knew the risks when they got on your ship.

    And you certainly don’t have malpractice liability like those in professions whereby those in your care have expectations of certain standards of care and fiduciary responsibility.

    But what rationalization is sufficient for you to keep making spending decisions which provide no possible chance of survival for your ship and all souls aboard?

    What benefit to you is this relentless profligate spending at prices defying any rational justification?

    Death Spiral: you put us in it. You can always jump, leave us to crash and burn, you have a parachute and you’ll be ok.

    Any hero pilots out there? You feel like staying with the ship a little longer, trying something different, give us a chance to pull out?

    Say NO to spending any more on projects which are not utterly critical to survival.

    Say NO to spending on anything whatsoever which will cost your people, those who rely on your integrity, more than 135% of National Average.

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