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Sept. 6, 2001

Electronic filing now available in prevailing wage program

TUMWATER - Public-works contractors can now use the Internet to get "Intent" and "Affidavit" forms approved more quickly, speeding up payments.

The new electronic-filing service at the Department of Labor & Industries is expected to reduce to no more than 48 hours the time it takes to process prevailing wage forms. The manual process, while still available, may at times take two weeks or more due to construction cycles.

Under state law, public-works contractors must pay prevailing wages, which are meant to protect workers from substandard earnings and to preserve local wage standards. Prevailing wages are based on surveys conducted by L&I.

Contractors on public-works projects such as roads, schools and other public buildings do not receive initial payments until they file an "Intent" that establishes the precise wages they will pay their workers. At the end of a job, they don't receive final payments until they file an "Affidavit" certifying that those wages were, in fact, paid. Contractors who don't file the forms are subject to a $500 fine per form.

L&I's new service, which uses digital-signature technology, is the agency's latest step to offer e-commerce options. It also marks the first time L&I is offering a service that gives the customer the option to pay fees electronically by credit card. There is a $25 filing fee for each Intent and Affidavit form.

To use the system, you must have:

  • A Visa or MasterCard

  • Internet Explorer 5.X

  • Intermediate or greater DST Certificate of Authentication

  • A contractor registration number with L&I

Intents and Affidavits filed electronically will be available to be viewed or downloaded on the Internet by public agencies, contractors and the public.

Information on the electronic-filing option and how to use it is available at www.lni.wa.gov/prevailingwage/pwia, or by calling the prevailing wage office at 360-902-5335.

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