The state of Missouri is adopting new wage requirements for construction projects on public roads and buildings.
Governor Jay Nixon said Friday that he will allow a bill changing prevailing wage rates to take effect as law without his signature.
The prevailing wage is essentially is a special minimum wage for public works projects. It's determined for each construction trade on a county-by-county basis according to voluntary surveys about wages.
Republicans claim it leads to artifically high wages in rural areas when union rates get used.
The legislation divides the wage surveys by union and non-union contractors in rural counties, and bases the prevailing wage on whichever group reports more work hours. It also allows prior years' wages to be used when no surveys are returned.