Lingle vetoes bill on wage law violations
The governor calls the proposed penalties for contractors too harsh
Gov. Linda Lingle has vetoed a bill that would have increased penalties for contractors who violate wage laws.
In her first veto message to the 2006 Legislature, Lingle said Senate Bill 3008 would have forced the state to cite contractors for each individual construction project violation, no matter how minor.
"If violations were discovered in one investigation involving multiple construction projects, the contractor would receive multiple citations," Lingle said.
After three violations a contractor would not be allowed to take on any public-works contracts.
"Considering the complexity of the law and the difficulties it poses for a contractor to successfully navigate, this result is too harsh," Lingle said.
Rep. Kirk Caldwell, Labor Committee chairman, said the bill had the backing of all local construction unions and would serve as an incentive to keep contractors from violating the wage laws.
"If you are a contractor who isn't complying with the wage laws, you might decide to continue violating the law," Caldwell (D, Manoa) said.
Because the bill had been sent to Lingle before the end of the session, the Legislature still has time to override Lingle's veto before adjourning. But it was unclear whether the Legislature would attempt an override or just amend another labor bill to address the same concerns.
"It is too early to gauge the possibility of a veto override," Senate President Robert Bunda said. "The members will take the governor's objections under consideration before making any decision on an override."