Philadelphia Building Service Employees: Prevailing Wages and Benefits

Philadelphia Building Service Employees: Prevailing Wages and Benefits

Building service employees are critical to the safe and clean operation of any building. Under Philadelphia law, employees such as janitors, front desk persons, security guards, maintenance workers and landscapers who work in the City at large institutions receiving City financial assistance, such as Hospitals, Universities, Large Commercial Buildings, Convention Centers and Airports, must be paid prevailing wages and health benefits which are much higher than the current $7.25 federal and state minimum wage.

Does it make a difference whether I am employed directly by a hospital or university or whether I was hired by its contractor/subcontractor?

No, under City Law, you must be paid at least the minimum/prevailing wages and benefits, regardless of whether you are employed directly by a hospital or university, or are employed by one of its contractors or subcontractors (e.g., a cleaning or security company).

Minimum wage for all occupations:

Each occupation of worker has its own prevailing wage.  However, any Building Service worker must be paid at least the following wages (plus health benefits):

(a)   Between January 1, 2019 and June 30, 2019, twelve dollars and forty cents ($12.40);

(b)   Between July 1, 2019, and June 30, 2020, thirteen dollars and twenty-five cents ($13.25);

(c)   Between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, thirteen dollars and seventy-five cents ($13.75);

(d)   Between July 1, 2021, and June 30, 2022, fourteen dollars and twenty-five cents ($14.25).

Prevailing wages for specific occupations:

Beyond the minimum wages just mentioned, each specific occupation may have an even higher prevailing wage requirement.  For example, the following occupations must be paid at least the following hourly wages (plus health benefits):

  • Janitors and Elevator Operators, $14.17 per hour
  • Groundskeepers, $16.22 per hour
  • Window Cleaners, $15.35 per hour
  • Security Guard I, $14.50 per hour
  • Security Guard II, $18.81 per hour
  • Alarm Monitors, $22.66 per hour
  • Maintenance Electricians, $33.75 per hour
  • HVAC Mechanics, $26.31 per hour

Health benefits for all occupations:

In addition to their required minimum or prevailing hourly wage, each occupation of worker must also be provided health benefits with a value of at least $4.54 per hour ($181.60 per week or $786.93 per month).  Alternatively, the employer may be able to satisfy this requirement by providing this same amount of money in the form of additional hourly wages.

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