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Minnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Paul Torkelson (R)

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Friday, April 15, 2011
ST. PAUL – In an effort to give road construction employees the freedom of choice, State Representative Paul Torkelson (R-Nelson Township) is authoring legislation that would allow them to work a more family-friendly schedule. “The current prevailing wage law states that an employee cannot work more than eight hours of regular time per day,” Torkelson said. “Several people who work in construction have told me they would like this requirement changed. Under Torkelson’s bill, people working on highway or heavy construction projects across the state could work their regular time in four ten-hour days a week, as opposed to five eight-hour days. Torkelson said many of the construction employees do not work near their hometowns. Giving them the four ten-hour days option would allow them to have a long weekend with their families, or simply give them an extra day off. “The legislation wouldn’t ask them to put in more than 40 regular time hours a week,” Torkelson said. “What we’re saying is if the crew wants to do the same amount of work in four days as it would normally do in five, then we should give them that option.”