General contractors and subcontractors who perform work on public works projects or public – private projects which are subject to California's prevailing wage laws should register with the California Department of Industrial Relations lest they be prevented from bidding on public works contracts or worse yet having a current contract cancelled.
New legislation (Stats. 2014, ch. 28, sections 62 - 63) amended the prevailing wage laws that govern public works construction projects to require that a contractor or subcontractor on public works bids and contracts register with the Department of Industrial Relations, pay non-refundable registration and renewal fees, and provide the requested information concerning the contractor's or subcontractor's eligibility.
A contractor or subcontractor who fails to register with the Department of Industrial Relations cannot bid on a public works contract, be listed in a public works bid proposal, or perform work under a public works contract. A contract awarded to an unregistered contractor will be unlawful, void, and voidable. Should an unregistered subcontractor be included within a successful bid, the general contractor can substitute a registered subcontractor with the permission of the public agency.
Given the change in the law, all contractors and subcontractors who are working on public contracts projects or who intend to bid on public contracts projects in the future should register with the Department of Industrial Relations lest they risk having a contract cancelled or being prevented from bidding on a contract. The Department of Industrial Relations maintains a data base of registered contractors and subcontractors. Additional information concerning the registration process can be found at the website of the California Department of Industrial Relations.