U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Employment and Training Administration
Washington, D. C. 20210
CLASSIFICATION

ES

CORRESPONDENCE SYMBOL

DFLC

ISSUE DATE

October 31, 1997

RESCISSIONS

GAL 4-95, GAL 2-97 GAL 2-97, Change 1

EXPIRATION DATE

November 30, 1998

 

DIRECTIVE : GENERAL ADMINISTRATION LETTER NO. 02-98
TO : ALL STATE EMPLOYMENT SECURITY AGENCIES
FROM : Wendy L. McConnell
Acting Administrator
for Regional Management
SUBJECT : Prevailing Wage Policy for Nonagricultural Immigration Programs.

 

  1. Purpose:. To provide policy clarification and procedural guidance for making prevailing wage determinations for nonagricultural immigration programs subsequent to the implementation of the wage component of the Occupational Employment Statistics program.
  2. References. 20 CFR part 655, subpart A; 20 CFR part 655, subparts H and I; 20 CFR part 656; and Technical Assistance Guide (TAG) No. 656 Labor Certifications.
  3. Background. Over the past two years, the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) has been considering proposals for reengineering the process used by the States to determine prevailing wages in order to increase the timeliness of responses to employer requests, insure the use of a consistent methodology by all States, and to maximize the accuracy of the determinations. As a result of this activity, it was determined that the most efficient and cost effective way to develop consistently accurate prevailing wage rates is to use the wage component of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' expanded Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program.

    Effective January 1, 1998, State Employment Security Agencies (SESAs) are to implement the attached prevailing wage policy for nonagricultural immigration programs. The OES wage data should not be used for alien certification purposes until that date unless there are no other sources of wage data for a particular occupational classification and area. The validity of SESA surveys or published surveys which were to expire October 1, 1997, pursuant to GAL 2-97, "Changes in the Prevailing Wage Process for Labor Certification During Fiscal Year 1997," is hereby extended through December 31, 1997. The policy guidance provided in this document supersedes that contained in GAL No. ' 4-95 (May 18, 1995) effective January 1, 1998.

  4. Action Required. State Administrators are requested to:
    1. Provide the attached policy and procedural guidance to appropriate staff.
    2. Instruct staff to follow these policies and procedures in making prevailing wage determinations under the permanent and H-2B temporary labor certification programs as well as under the H-1B nonimmigrant program for professionals in specialty occupations or as fashion models of distinguished merit and ability.
  5. Inquiries. Inquiries regarding this memorandum should be addressed to the appropriate regional certifying officer.
  6. AttachmentsPrevailing Wage Policy for Nonagricultural Immigration Programs.