Nashville, TN Opposing Legislation Regarding Preemption of Living and Prevailing Wages
Status: Adopted on 4/21/09
Source File: Opposing the TN Legislature
RESOLUTION NO. RS2009-729
A resolution opposing legislation currently pending in the Tennessee House of Representatives that would preempt local governments from requiring private employers to pay its employees a living wage or prevailing wage not required to be paid under state or federal law.
WHEREAS, during this period of economic recession, it is important that local governments take the necessary steps to ensure that its citizens can meet basic needs without relying on government or charitable assistance; and
WHEREAS, one proven, cost-effective method for raising the living standards in local communities is the enactment of living wage and prevailing wage ordinances; and
WHEREAS, a full-time worker making the federal minimum wage of $6.55 per hour makes $13,624 annually, which is more than $8,000 below the poverty line for a family of four; and
WHEREAS, more than 140 local governments across the country have enacted living wage ordinances, including Memphis and Shelby County, Tennessee; and
WHEREAS, the Metropolitan Council has enacted a prevailing wage ordinance requiring any company entering into any contractual agreement with the Metropolitan Government for any type of building or construction work using government funds to pay its employees not less than the prevailing wage rates as established for the county by the United States Department of Labor under the federal Davis--Bacon Act; and
WHEREAS, SB0083/HB0311, which has already been approved by the Senate (as amended) and is currently pending in the Tennessee House of Representatives, would prohibit local governments from requiring a private employer to pay its employees any wage not required to be paid to such employee under state or federal law; and
WHEREAS, this state legislation violates a basic principal of representative democracy, which is to enable the legislative body to make decisions for the betterment and protection of its constituents; and
WHEREAS, it is fitting and proper that local governments retain control over enacting appropriate living wage and prevailing wage legislation for their communities.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT OF NASHVILLE AND DAVIDSON COUNTY:
Section 1. That the Metropolitan County Council hereby goes on record as opposing HB0311 currently pending in the Tennessee House of Representatives that would preempt local governments from requiring private employers to pay its employees a living wage or prevailing wage not required to be paid under state or federal law.
Section 2. The Metropolitan Clerk is directed to send a copy of this Resolution to each member of the Davidson County Delegation to the Tennessee General Assembly.
Section 3. This Resolution shall take effect from and after its adoption, the welfare of The Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County requiring it.