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Michigan cities get OK to influence wages on public projects

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Supreme Court says cities and villages have the power to determine wages on public construction projects.

The court overturned a decision from 1923, saying it was trumped 40 years later by powers given to local government in the Michigan Constitution.

The Supreme Court opinion came Tuesday in a case involving Lansing and a construction trade group. Associated Builders and Contractors sued Lansing after the capital city approved an ordinance that tied wages on public projects to prevailing pay and benefits in the Lansing area.

Chief Justice Robert Young Jr. says there’s “simply no room for doubt” about the powers granted to cities in the 1963 constitution.

The court’s seven justices were unanimous in the result, although Justice Brian Zahra wrote his own opinion.

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