(1) Employers are not required to establish "usual benefit" programs. If an employer chooses not to provide such benefits, however, wages paid must be at the full prevailing wage rate as defined by RCW 39.12.010
(2) To be deemed a "usual benefit," the following requirements must be satisfied:
(a) Employer payments for the usual benefit shall be made only in conformance with all applicable federal and state laws, including the requirements of the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended, and of the Internal Revenue Service; and
(b) Employee payments toward the usual benefit, through self-contribution, payroll deduction, or otherwise, shall not constitute a credit to the employer for prevailing wage purposes.
(3) "Usual benefits" are limited to the following:
(a) Health and welfare payments. This is medical insurance, which may include dental, vision, and life insurance. Insurance programs providing protection against industrial accidents or occupational illnesses which are mandated by state or federal statutes, and all related mandatory forms of protection, shall not qualify as health and welfare insurance.
(b) Employer payments on behalf of a person employed for the purpose of providing retirement income.
(c) Vacation payments made either directly to the employees or into a vacation fund, provided these benefits are paid to the employees.
(d) Apprentice training fund. Payments made to training programs approved or recognized by the Washington state apprenticeship and training council.
(e) Paid holidays. Payments made to employees for specified holidays.
(4) Any fringe benefits required by other local, state, or federal laws do not qualify as "usual benefits."
[Statutory Authority: Chapters 39.04 and 39.12 RCW and RCW 43.22.270. 92-01-104, § 296-127-014, filed 12/18/91, effective 1/31/92; 88-22-046 (Order 88-22), § 296-127-014, filed 10/31/88.]