(2) The term "construction," as used in this article, shall mean any construction, reconstruction, improvement, enlargement, painting, decorating, or repair of any public improvement let to contract. The term "construction" shall not be construed to include temporary or emergency repairs.
(3) The term "locality" means the county where the construction is to be performed, except that if there is not available in the county a sufficient number of competent skilled laborers, workmen and mechanics to perform such construction efficiently and properly, and may include one or more counties in this state adjacent to the one in which the construction is to be performed and from which such skilled laborers, workmen and mechanics may be obtained in sufficient numbers to perform the construction. With respect to construction of public improvements with the state road commission, "locality" may be construed to include one or more counties in this state adjacent to the one in which the construction or public improvement is to be performed and from which skilled laborers, workmen and mechanics may be accessible for work on such construction on public improvements.
(4) The term "public improvement," as used in this article, shall include all buildings, roads, highways, bridges, streets, alleys, sewers, ditches, sewage disposal plants, waterworks, airports, and all other structures upon which construction may be let to contract by the state of West Virginia or any political subdivision thereof.
(5) The term "construction industry," as used in this article, shall mean that industry which is composed of employees and employers engaged in construction of buildings, roads, highways, bridges, streets, alleys, sewers, ditches, sewage disposal plants, waterworks, airports, and all other structures or works whether private or public on which construction work as defined in subsection (2) of this section is performed.
(6) The term "board" shall mean the minimum wage board as constituted in this article.
(7) The term "employee," for the purposes of this article, shall not be construed to include such persons as are employed or hired by the public authority on a regular or temporary basis or engaged in making temporary or emergency repairs.
Acts, 1991 Reg. Sess., Ch. 149.
In determining such prevailing rates, the department of labor may ascertain and consider the applicable wage rates established by collective bargaining agreements, if any, and such rates as are paid generally within the locality in this state where the construction of the public improvement is to be performed.
(2) A copy of the determination so made, certified by the secretary of the board, shall be filed immediately with the secretary of state and with the department of labor. Copies shall be supplied to all persons requesting same within ten days after such filing.
(3) At any time within fifteen days after the certified copies of the determination have been filed with the secretary of state and the department of labor, any person who may be affected thereby may object in writing to the determination or such part thereof as he deems objectionable by filing a written notice with the department of labor stating the specific grounds of the objection.
(4) Within ten days of the receipt of the objection, the department of labor shall set a date for a hearing on the objection. The date for the hearing shall be within thirty days after the receipt of the objection. Written notice of the time and place of the hearing shall be given to the objectors at least ten days prior to the date set for the hearing and at a time so as to enable the objectors to be present.
(5) The department of labor at its discretion may hear such written objection separately or consolidate for hearing any two or more written objections. At the hearing the department of labor shall introduce into evidence the results of the investigation it instituted and such other facts which were considered at the time of the original determination of the fair minimum prevailing hourly rate including the sources which formed the basis for its determination. The department of labor or any objectors thereafter may introduce such further evidence as may be material to the issues.
(6) Within ten days of the conclusion of the hearing, the department must rule on the written objections and make such final determination as shall be established by a preponderance of the evidence. Immediately upon such final determination, the department of labor shall file a certified copy of its final determination with the secretary of state and with the department of labor and shall serve a copy of the final determination on all parties to the proceedings by personal service or by registered mail.
(7) Any person affected by the final determination of the department of labor, whether or not such person participated in the proceedings resulting in such final determination, may appeal to the board from the final determination of the department of labor within ten days from the filing of the copy of the final determination with the secretary of state. The board shall hear the appeal within twenty days from the receipt of notice of appeal. The hearing by the board shall be held in Charleston. The hearing by the board shall be upon the record compiled in the hearing before the department of labor and the board shall have the authority to affirm, reverse, amend, or remand for further evidence, the final determination of the department of labor. The board shall render its decision within ten days after the conclusion of its hearing.
(8) Any party to the proceeding before the board or any person affected thereby may within thirty days after receipt of the notice of its decision, appeal the board's decision to the circuit court of the county wherever the construction of a public improvement is to be performed, which shall consider the case on the record made before the commissioner of labor and before the board. The decision of such circuit court may be appealed to the supreme court of appeals of West Virginia by any party to the proceedings or by any person affected thereby in the manner provided by law for appeals in civil actions.
(9) Pending the decision on appeal, the rates for the preceding year shall remain in effect.
(b) Any skilled laborer, workman or mechanic who is engaged in construction on a public improvement let to contract, who is paid less than the posted fair minimum rate of wages applicable thereto, may recover from such contractor or subcontractor the difference between the same and the posted fair minimum rate of wages, and in addition thereto, a penalty equal in amount to such difference, and reasonable attorney fees. The venue of said action shall be in the county where the work is performed: Provided, however, That an honest mistake or error shall not be construed as a basis for recovery under this subsection.
(c) Where skilled laborers, workmen and mechanics are employed in construction on a public improvement and their posted rate of wages has been determined as provided by this article, it shall be unlawful for any person, for himself or another, to request, demand or receive, either before or after such skilled laborers, workmen and mechanics are employed in construction on a public improvement, that they or any one of them pay over money or other thing of value or pay back, return, donate, contribute or give any part or all of their said wages, or thing of value, to any person, upon the statement, representation or understanding that failure to comply with such request or demand will prevent them or any one of them from procuring or retaining employment; and any person who directly or indirectly aids, requests or authorizes any other person to violate any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and fined not less than fifty dollars and not more than two hundred fifty dollars.
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