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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Federal Register: December 4, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 232)]
[Notices]               
[Page 63796-63797]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr04de09-108]                         

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Employment and Training Administration

 
Prevailing Wage Determinations for Use in the H-1B, H-1B1 (Chile/
Singapore), H-1C, H-2B, E-3 (Australia), and Permanent Labor 
Certification Programs; Prevailing Wage Determinations for Use in the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands

AGENCY: Employment and Training Administration, Department of Labor.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Department of Labor (Department) is providing notice that, 
in accordance with its labor certification regulations, as of January 
1, 2010, the Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) National 
Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk Center (NPWHC) in Washington, DC, will 
receive and process prevailing wage determination (PWD) requests for 
use in the H-1B, H-1B1 (Chile/Singapore), H-1C, H-2B, E-3 (Australia), 
and permanent labor certification programs. In addition, the Department 
is providing guidance about the implementation of the issuance of PWDs 
for applications in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands 
(CNMI).

DATES: This Notice is effective November 28, 2009, for PWD requests for 
job opportunities in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands; 
and January 1, 2010, for all other PWD requests.

ADDRESSES: None.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William L. Carlson, Administrator, 
Office of Foreign Labor Certification, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 
Constitution Avenue, NW., Room C-4312, Washington, DC 20210; telephone: 
(202) 693-3010 (this is not a toll-free number).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    On December 19, 2008, the Department published a Final Rule 
addressing the Labor Certification Process and Enforcement for 
Temporary Employment in Occupations Other Than Agriculture or 
Registered Nursing in the United States (H-2B Workers), and Other 
Technical Changes, 73 FR 78020, Dec. 19, 2008. The Final Rule 
implemented a federalized process for obtaining PWD requests for use in 
the H-2B temporary nonagricultural labor certification program directly 
from the Employment and Training Administration's (ETA) appropriate 
National Processing Center (NPC)--which was designated as the Chicago 
NPC in the preamble to the Final Rule. Beginning on January 1, 2010, 
the Final Rule also federalized PWD for use in the H-1B, H-1B1 (Chile/
Singapore), H-1C, E-3 (Australia), and the permanent labor 
certification programs.
    Effective on January 1, 2010, the processing of all PWD requests 
for the above-referenced labor certification programs will be 
centralized in OFLC's NPWHC in Washington, DC. The NPWHC will receive 
and process PWD requests in accordance with the applicable regulations 
and Department guidance. The one exception to this is PWD requests for 
CNMI; the NPWHC will begin receiving and processing those effective 
November 28, 2009.

[[Page 63797]]

    The CNMI is an unincorporated territory of the United States (U.S.) 
whose relationship with the U.S. is governed by the Covenant to 
Establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political 
Union with the United States of America, Public Law 94-241, 90 Stat. 
263 (1976), as amended (Covenant). The Covenant was recently modified 
by Congress in Title VII of the Consolidated Natural Resources Act, 
Public Law 110-229, Title VII, Subtitle A, 122 Stat. 754, 853 (2008) 
(CNRA). The CNRA applies the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and 
other U.S. immigration laws to the CNMI beginning on November 28, 2009, 
with a transition period that will end on December 31, 2014, unless 
certain provisions are extended by the Department.
    The CNMI Department of Labor, as of November 28, would normally be 
charged with the issuance of PWDs under the various regulations 
governing such determinations. Since there is very little time between 
November 28, 2009, and January 1, 2010, the Department has determined 
it is more feasible for the Department to receive such requests 
directly rather than have the CNMI receive and process such requests. 
All requests for a PWD for a job opportunity on CNMI made in connection 
with a potential filing in a labor certification program must be made 
in the manner described in ``Filing Procedures,'' below.

Regulations

    All employers submitting PWD requests and related actions must 
follow the prevailing wage requirements set forth in 20 CFR 655.10, 
655.11, 655.731, 655.1112, 656.40 and 656.41, as applicable.

Filing Procedures

a. PWD Requests

    1. Requestors must submit PWD requests using the Application for 
Prevailing Wage Determination, Form ETA-9141.
    2. Requestors must submit PWD requests to the NPWHC by U.S. Mail or 
comparable physical delivery service at the following address: U.S. 
Department of Labor-ETA, National Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk Center, 
Attn: PWD Request; 1341 G Street, NW., Suite 201, Washington, DC 20005-
3142.

    Note: On and after November 28, 2009, for the CMNI and on and 
after January 1, 2010, the NPWHC will only process PWD requests 
received by mail in hard copy.

    The Department is in the process of developing an electronic means 
for the submission of PWD requests and will publish a notice in the 
Federal Register informing the public when such a process becomes 
available.
    3. Employer Provided Wage Documentation for H-1B, H-2B and 
Permanent Labor Certification Programs.
    The NPWHC will consider wage information provided by the employer 
in making a PWD. Where not present in the survey submitted, an employer 
should provide the following information pertaining to its survey, 
except when McNamara-O'Hara Service Contract Act (SCA) or Davis Bacon 
Act (DBA) wages have been requested.
    i. The name of the published survey, when appropriate;
    ii. The publication schedule for the survey, when appropriate. This 
should include the publication date of the requested survey, the date 
of the previous version of the survey and the date of the next release 
of the survey (actual or anticipated);
    iii. When the data was collected;
    iv. A description of the job duties or activities used in the 
survey;
    v. The methodology used in the survey;
    A. How the universe is defined;
    B. How the sample size was determined;
    C. How the participants were selected; and
    1. The number of employers surveyed for the occupation in the area;
    2. The number of wage value responses (employees) for the 
occupation in the area;
    D. A list of employer participants or explanation of how the cross 
industry nature of the survey was maintained;
    E. How the presented wage was determined and if it is mean or 
median;
    F. Any other appropriate information on the survey's methodology;
    G. The area covered by the survey or relevant portion and an 
explanation of any expansion of the area beyond normal commuting 
distance, when applicable;
    4. Employer-Provided Wage Documentation for SCA/DBA.
    No employer-provided wage documents are initially required for SCA/
DBA wage rate requests but NPWHC staff may require the requestor to 
submit additional documentation, if needed to make a PWD.

b. Redeterminations

    All requests for prevailing wage redeterminations must be sent to 
the: U.S. Department of Labor-ETA; National Prevailing Wage and 
Helpdesk Center, Attn.: PW Redetermination, 1341 G Street, NW., Suite 
201, Washington, DC 20005-3142.

c. OFLC Review

    Requests for OFLC review or PWD challenges must be mailed to the: 
U.S. Department of Labor-ETA; National Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk 
Center; Attn.: PWD Review, 1341 G Street, NW., Suite 201, Washington, 
DC 20005-3142.

d. BALCA Review of PWDs

    For all programs, requests for review by the Board of Alien Labor 
Certification Appeals (BALCA) must be in writing and must be made no 
more than 30 days after determination. Employers must send their 
requests for BALCA review to the following address: U.S. Department of 
Labor-ETA, National Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk Center, Attn.: PWD 
Appeal, 1341 G Street, NW., Suite 201, Washington, DC 20005-3142.

e. State Workforce Agencies and Chicago NPC to Cease Processing PWD 
Requests Received on and After January 1, 2010

    State Workforce Agencies (SWAs) and the Chicago NPC, where PWD 
requests are currently submitted, will complete any PWD requests 
received on or prior to December 31, 2009. The Chicago NPC or SWA will 
maintain responsibility for processing PWD requests and review requests 
(including all challenges and appeals) under 20 CFR 656.40 or 656.41 or 
20 CFR 655.10 or 655.11, as appropriate, so long as the original PWD 
request was received on or prior to December 31, 2009.
    Any PWD request, using the ETA Form 9141, received from January 1, 
2010, up to and including January 15, 2010, will be forwarded by the 
SWA or the Chicago NPC to the NPWHC. Requests received after January 
15, 2010, will be returned to the requestor with a cover letter that 
includes instructions on where to send the request and where to obtain 
a copy of the ETA-9141.

    Signed in Washington, DC, this 25th day of November 2009.
Jane Oates,
Assistant Secretary, Employment and Training Administration.
[FR Doc. E9-28963 Filed 12-3-09; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4510-FP-P




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