Title 37
Public Property and Works

Chapter 13
Labor and Payment of Debts by Contractors

R.I. Gen. Laws § 37-13-7

§ 37-13-7. Specification in contract of amount and frequency of payment of wages.

(a) Every call for bids for every contract in excess of one thousand dollars ($1,000), to which the state of Rhode Island or any political subdivision thereof or any public agency or quasi-public agency is a party, for the transportation of public and private school pupils pursuant to §§ 16-21-1 and 16-21.1-8, or for construction, alteration, and/or repair, including painting and decorating, of public buildings or public works of the state of Rhode Island or any political subdivision thereof, or any public agency or quasi-public agency and that requires or involves the employment of employees, shall contain a provision stating the minimum wages to be paid various types of employees which shall be based upon the wages that will be determined by the director of labor and training to be prevailing for the corresponding types of employees employed on projects of a character similar to the contract work in the city, town, village, or other appropriate political subdivision of the state of Rhode Island in which the work is to be performed. Every contract shall contain a stipulation that the contractor or his or her subcontractor shall pay all the employees employed directly upon the site of the work, unconditionally and not less often than once a week, and without subsequent deduction or rebate on any account, the full amounts accrued at time of payment computed at wage rates not less than those stated in the call for bids, regardless of any contractual relationships that may be alleged to exist between the contractor or subcontractor and the employees, and that the scale of wages to be paid shall be posted by the contractor in a prominent and easily accessible place at the site of the work; and the further stipulation that there may be withheld from the contractor so much of the accrued payments as may be considered necessary to pay to the employees employed by the contractor, or any subcontractor on the work, the difference between the rates of wages required by the contract to be paid the employees on the work and the rates of wages received by the employees and not refunded to the contractor, subcontractors, or their agents.

(b) The terms “wages,” “scale of wages,” “wage rates,” “minimum wages,” and “prevailing wages” shall include:

(1) The basic hourly rate of pay; and

(2) The amount of:

(i) The rate of contribution made by a contractor or subcontractor to a trustee or to a third person pursuant to a fund, plan, or program; and

(ii) The rate of costs to the contractor, subcontractor, vendor, or provider that may be reasonably anticipated in providing benefits to employees pursuant to an enforceable commitment to carry out a financially responsible plan or program that was communicated in writing to the employees affected, for medical or hospital care, pensions on retirement or death, compensation for injuries or illness resulting from occupational activity, or insurance to provide any of the foregoing, for unemployment benefits, life insurance, disability and sickness insurance, or accident insurance, for vacation and holiday pay, for defraying costs of apprenticeship or other similar programs, or for other bona fide fringe benefits, but only where the contractor or subcontractor is not required by other federal, state, or local law to provide any of the benefits; provided, that the obligation of a contractor or subcontractor to make payment in accordance with the prevailing wage determinations of the director of labor and training insofar as this chapter of this title and other acts incorporating this chapter of this title by reference are concerned may be discharged by the making of payments in cash, by the making of contributions of a type referred to in subsection (b)(2), or by the assumption of an enforceable commitment to bear the costs of a plan or program of a type referred to in this subdivision, or any combination thereof, where the aggregate of any payments, contributions, and costs is not less than the rate of pay described in subsection (b)(1) plus the amount referred to in subsection (b)(2).

(c) The term “employees,” as used in this section, shall include:

(1) Employees of contractors or subcontractors performing jobs on various types of public works including mechanics, apprentices, teamsters, chauffeurs, and laborers engaged in the transportation of gravel or fill to the site of public works, the removal and/or delivery of gravel or fill or ready-mix concrete, sand, bituminous stone, or asphalt flowable fill from the site of public works, or the transportation or removal of gravel or fill from one location to another on the site of public works, and the employment of the employees shall be subject to the provisions of subsections (a) and (b); and

(2) Persons employed by a provider contracted for the purpose of transporting public and private school pupils pursuant to §§ 16-21-1 and 16-21.1-8 shall be subject to the provisions of subsections (a) and (b) of this section. For the purposes of this subsection the term employee includes school bus drivers, aides, and monitors who are directly providing transportation services; the term employee does not include mechanics, dispatchers, or other personnel employed by the vendor whose duties are normally performed at a fixed location.

(d) The terms “public agency” and “quasi-public agency” shall include, but not be limited to: the Rhode Island industrial recreational building authority, the Rhode Island commerce corporation, the Rhode Island airport corporation, the Rhode Island industrial facilities corporation, the Rhode Island refunding bond authority, the Rhode Island housing and mortgage finance corporation, the Rhode Island resource recovery corporation, the Rhode Island public transit authority, the Rhode Island student loan authority, the water resources board corporate, the Rhode Island health and education building corporation, the Rhode Island turnpike and bridge authority, the Narragansett Bay water quality management district commission, the Rhode Island telecommunications authority, the convention center authority, the council on postsecondary education, the council on elementary and secondary education, the capital center commission, the housing resources commission, the Quonset Point-Davisville management corporation, the Rhode Island children’s crusade for higher education, the Rhode Island depositors economic protection corporation, the Rhode Island lottery commission, the Rhode Island partnership for science and technology, the Rhode Island public building authority, and the Rhode Island underground storage tank board.

History of Section.
P.L. 1974, ch. 237, § 3; P.L. 1976, ch. 193, § 1; P.L. 1999, ch. 75, § 1; P.L. 2001, ch. 321, § 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 141, art. 7, § 16; P.L. 2021, ch. 292, § 3, effective July 9, 2021; P.L. 2021, ch. 293, § 3, effective July 9, 2021.