The Davis-Bacon Act mandates payment of local prevailing wages on projects funded by the federal government. It prevents competition for federal construction contracts from artificially depressing local labor standards. Studies show, however that such a race to the bottom does not substantially cut public construction costs, as worker skills, experience and motivation drop in correlation to wage reductions.
One of the primary reasons that PLAs are utilized by business and labor is to coordinate the numerous construction workers under a single, umbrella contract for the project. PLAs are mainly used on large and complex construction and maintenance projects. For almost one hundred years, both public and private projects have used the PLA model for their original construction as well as maintenance.