The Legislature's transportation budge of $2.5 billion could be reduced about 12 percent by eliminating the subsidy to 3-5 percent of the population at the expense of the other 95-97 percent by eliminating the Prevailing Wage. Many states have done this. It is one of the four or five things that put Pennsylvania in the bottom 10 percent of all states for progress. Governor Ridge almost accomplished the feat, but several of his Republicans legislatures voted against it.
Prevailing wages increases construction costs like highways about 12 percent by having double to triple the wages required by the Commonwealth over competitive industry. The 12 percent reduction would save $300 million and could be used to reduce taxes or do overdue needed projects if any.
Thomas T. Taber