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April 14, 2011


Measure That Protects Workers and the Public from Fraud and Abuse Moves to Senate

Springfield — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today said the Illinois House of Representatives stood up for the state’s working women and men with the passage of House Bill 3237, which helps ensure the payment of fair and honest wages on publicly funded projects. The measure, sponsored by Rep. Brandon Phelps (D-Harrisburg), passed on a vote of 67-49 and now moves to the Senate.

“This bill protects all Illinoisans by ensuring that employees working on projects paid for by the taxpayers are compensated fairly for a hard day’s work,” said Attorney General Madigan.

If enacted into law, HB 3237 will toughen violations of the Act, modifying it from a misdemeanor to a Class 4 felony punishable by imprisonment of one to three years. It also would require the Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) to debar those criminally convicted for four years.

“In today’s tough times, we needed to make the statement that hard-working men and women deserve a fair wage and should not be shut out of work by contractors who outbid honest Illinois companies by undercutting wages,” Rep. Phelps said.

If enacted into law, the Prevailing Wage Act will be amended to:

  • Permit state, local and federal law enforcement agencies to obtain relevant documents from contractors and subcontractors. Currently, only IDOL and the relevant public body have the right to obtain these documents.

  • Reduces the amount of notice contractors and subcontractors have prior to the inspection of documents by government entities from 7 to 3 days.

The legislation also proposes more technical modifications to the existing language of the Act in order to make criminal prosecutions easier:

  • Ensures that officers and agents of corporations who perform prevailing wage work are held accountable for the actions of their corporations.

  • Clarifies the timeframe when certified payrolls must be filed and how long certified payroll records must be retained.


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