The Davis Beacon Act and Walsh Healy Act Term Paper by Nicky

The Davis Beacon Act and Walsh Healy Act
An examination of the impact of the Davis-Beacon Act and the Walsh Haley Act on labor relations in the United States.
# 149250 | 2,002 words | 7 sources | APA | 2011 | US
Published on Nov 30, 2011 in Law (Labor) , Labor Studies (General)

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The paper looks at the history and features of each act, who is covered by these acts and the advantages and disadvantages of these acts on labor relations over the years. The paper points out differences between the two acts and looks at the penalties for contractors or subcontractors that have been found to have disregarded their obligations to employees, or to have committed violations while performing work on Davis-Bacon or Walsh-Healy covered projects. The paper argues that the Davis- Beacon Act and the Walsh-Healy Act were right for their time, but both need to be amended and updated in order for them to be effective tools in regulating labor relations in this country while promoting growth and free enterprise.

Features of Both Acts

From the Paper:

"Both the Davis-Beacon Act and the Walsh-Haley Act have contributed significantly to the labor relations laws in this country over the years. Both acts had good intentions when they were developed, but have since then come under question and scrutiny. In the beginning they were enacted to help stabilize the construction industry while promoting fair wages. As times have changed throughout the years these acts are now seen as doing more harm than they are good. I would not recommend that these acts continue to be enforced as they are today. They both have a good basic foundation and with some amendments they could both once again be viable contributing factors in fair labor relations in this country.
"The wording of the Davis-Beacon act specifies that prevailing wages will be paid on government-financed projects. This has been found to mean that very high union pay scales that are well above the equilibrium wage necessary to secure a desired number of workers are being used. These are often double the non-union equilibrium wage. During the era in which Davis-Bacon was enacted the established wage in different cities, using union scale, varied from $1.00 to $1.75 an hour for bricklayers, in a time when the average wage for a production worker in manufacturing was barely 50 cents."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Contracts for materials, etc., exceeding $10,000; representations and stipulations. (n.d.). Retrieved June 30, 2009, from Cornell University Law School Web site:
  • Davis-Bacon and Related Acts. (n.d.). Retrieved June 29, 2009, from U.S. Department of Labor Web site:
  • Federal Labor Laws. (1993). Congressional Digest. 72(6/7), p164-166.
  • Parvin, Cordell. (1997). Davis-Bacon Act: Who's not covered? Roads & Bridges. 35(2), p12.
  • Prevailing Wages in Construction Contracts. (n.d). Retrieved June 30, 2009, from United States Department of Labor Web site:

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

The Davis Beacon Act and Walsh Healy Act (2011, November 30) Retrieved December 02, 2023, from

MLA Format

"The Davis Beacon Act and Walsh Healy Act" 30 November 2011. Web. 02 December. 2023. <>