Prevailing wage should be the choice job you look for, sure, union may top it - but when your on the bottom of a union list and you've been out of work for a while , it's not bad.
I was making $19.80, turns out the county I was working for gave us federal funded projects.... The projects I work on now, are state funded - so my wage just dropped to $13.50...
I can't complain too much. I am using any opportunity I can get the next time I get laid off to join the guard as a heavy equipment operator, I'm hoping when I get back from training - my boss will give me a shot to run some basic construction equipment. I don't know how long my back will last as a laborer, and I don't want to put my health on risk just for procrasting and not trying to better myself.
Anyways, what I'm trying to say here is - if you have money in the bank, and are laid off -> Try to better your skills. Earn a CDL, Try to operate heavy equipment as a intern or without pay, look into certification programs relevant to what field of construction your in.
There are literally 20 people a week applying for my job, what guarantees job security for me - is working my ass off, doing whatever I can to help out, and trying to learn anything whenever i have down time. I do not want to be out of work again..