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Compliance Department

Prevailing Wage

The Prevailing Wage Ordinance, San Diego Municipal Code (SDMC), Chapter 2, Article 30, Division 30, Section 22.3019, requires all City-funded contracts and task orders awarded, entered into, or extended on or after January 1, 2014 to comply with California Labor Code sections 1770-1781. The Ordinance applies to public works projects, as defined by California Labor Code 1720-1743, for construction work over $25,000 and any alteration, demolition, repair, or maintenance work over $15,000. The Office of Labor Standards and Enforcement (OLSE) Prevailing Wage Unit (PWU) monitors and enforces prevailing wage labor compliance requirements on all City-awarded public works projects under the Ordinance and any public works contracts with State and/or federal funding.

City-awarded contracts can be found on the Purchasing & Contracting Departments’ webpage:

Labor Compliance Program

The state of California’s Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) approved the City’s current Labor Compliance Program (LCP) on December 29, 2009.  The LCP’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to, educating contractors of their prevailing wage obligations, reviewing and auditing certified payrolls to ensure the payment of the appropriate prevailing wage rates and benefits, conducting preconstruction conferences, performing site visits, investigating worker complaints, identifying wage miscalculations and violations, and reporting prevailing wage violations to the DIR.

Certified Payroll & Contractor Trainings

Contractors and subcontractors are required to submit certified payroll records (CPRs) to the City of San Diego via PRISM Compliance and to the Labor Commissioner using the DIR’s electronic certified payroll reporting system.  Web-based training sessions are available to instruct contractors how to set up their reporting accounts and submit all required information to the Prevailing Wage Unit. The sessions cover information regarding the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) and Department of Labor (DOL) prevailing wage requirements, including certified payroll reporting and apprentice utilization. Contractors can learn how to use Prism Compliance for payroll through our quarterly labor compliance and certified payroll live webinars. The training is tailored to City of San Diego projects.

The following trainings have been scheduled for calendar year 2024:

  1. Jan. 11, 2024, 9:00-10:30 am
  2. Apr.  4, 2024, 9:00-10:30 am
  3. Jul.  11, 2024, 9:00-10:30 am
  4. Oct.  3, 2024, 9:00-10:30 am

To register for a training, contact the Prevailing Wage Unit at and include the desired training date, company name, participant name, and participant email.

Certified Payroll Reporting Links:

Prevailing Wage Tutorials and Seminars

Apprenticeship Requirements

All public works contracts valued at $30,000 or more require contractors to hire apprentices, unless the craft or trade does not require the use of apprentices. Contractors must abide by the requirements of Sections 1777.5, 1777.6, and 1777.7 of the State of California Labor Code concerning the employment of apprentices by a contractor and any subcontractor performing a public works contract.

Contractors must submit Contract Award Information (DAS 140) to every apprenticeship program in the geographic area of the public works project, for each craft you intend to employ on the project.

All contractors who are not already employing sufficient apprentices are required to request dispatch, either consecutively or simultaneously, from all approved apprenticeship programs in the geographical area of the project.

An apprentice must be properly registered in an approved apprenticeship program certified by the California Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS). If an apprentice is not registered, journeyman wages must be paid. For more information on apprentice programs and for a list of approved programs by county and craft, visit the DAS Apprenticeship Program Information.

For more information in apprentice requirements, please use the links below:

Report a Violation / File a Complaint

If you work on a City of San Diego public works project and believe your employer is in violation of state and/or federal prevailing wage requirements, you can file a complaint or complete the form below and submit to the Office of Labor Standards & Enforcement for review. Include copies of any documents or records that support your complaint.

Requesting Copies of Certified Payroll Records

To request copies of certified payroll records under Labor Code §1776 (b)(3) and 8 CCR § 16400(a)(1), please email with “Certified Payroll Request” as the subject line and provide the following information:

  • Project Name/Number
  • Job Location, if more than one
  • Name of each contractor and/or subcontractor
  • Regular business address of contractor, if known

The Prevailing Wage Unit will acknowledge receipt of the request and indicate the cost of reproducing copies of the requested records. The preparation costs include $1.00 for the first page of the payroll record and $0.25 for each page thereafter. Payment must be received by the Prevailing Wage Unit prior to release of the documents. 8 CCR § 16402

All identifying information, including employees’ names, addresses, and Social Security numbers will be redacted from certified payroll records provided to the public (8 CCR § 16403), unless the request is made by a joint labor-management committees or Taft-Harley trust funds. Requests made by a joint labor-management committee or Taft-Hartley trust funds must specify that their request is made pursuant to the appropriate California Labor Code section. 

Requests for any records other than certified payrolls pursuant to the California Public Records Act should be directed to the City’s NextRequest portal.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about your rights or responsibilities, contact the Office of Labor Standards & Enforcement Prevailing Wage Unit:

Phone: (619) 533-4358
Fax: (619) 533-3320
202 C St., 8th Floor
San Diego, CA 92101