MICHIGAN — After her promise to, “Fix the Damn Roads,” Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s administration worked hard to attract and retain the best construction workers in the country. Throughout the past few years, there are numerous examples of Whitmer standing up for those who build Michigan.
In March, Whitmer signed her 800th bipartisan bill.
House Bill 5286 amends the Michigan Vehicle code to empower Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), a county road commission, or a local road authority to implement traffic control measures and a digital message board displaying the speed limit required when workers are present to improve safety of construction workers.
“This bill will ensure we are doing everything possible to keep our workers safe as they work to fix our roads,” said Rep. Mark Huizinga, R – Walker. “Having drivers reduce their speed when workers are present can decrease the likelihood of a tragic accident, but sometimes drivers don’t see the road crews until they are too close. By allowing for these modified signs, we can inform drivers about the presence of workers so they can follow the law and protect lives.”
“Keeping our members safe while on the job is our top priority” said Geno Alessandrini, business manager for the Michigan Laborers District Council. “House Bill 5286 takes important steps to reduce drivers speed where our workers are repairing Michigan roads. This keeps both workers and drivers safe.”
Whitmer also reinstated prevailing wage for state construction projects in 2021. This came after the Michigan legislature barred prevailing wage by passing a ballot measure that came before them.
“By reinstating prevailing wage, we are ensuring that working people get treated with dignity and respect, which starts with a fair wage,” said Governor Whitmer. “As governor, I am proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with working people and unions who built the middle class. By reinstating prevailing wage, we are ensuring working people can earn a decent standard of living, saving taxpayers money and time on crucial infrastructure projects, and offering Michigan a highly-trained workforce to rely on as we build up our roads and bridges, replace lead pipes, install high-speed internet, and more.”
“We applaud Governor Whitmer’s decision to restore prevailing wage requirements on state projects.” said Tom Lutz, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights. “This decision protects Michigan’s investments in infrastructure because when prevailing wages are the expectation, contractors have to compete on a level playing field based on quality of their skilled work, not on the exploitation of their workers.”