February 2016

Compliance News

In this issue of our quarterly newsletter on prevailing wage and Davis-Bacon Act compliance news and trends, we feature compliance team wins, announce two new clients and introduce a new Executive Order. 

As always, we're interested to know about the issues you're facing and the questions you may have in the complex arena of Davis-Bacon Act compliance. Please send us an email with feedback.  Together, let's level the playing field! 
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TCLG compliance team earns wins for Florida pipefitters

Torres Consulting & Law Group helped the  Florida Pipe Trades achieve success after the TCLG compliance team filed third party complaints to the U.S. Department of Labor targeting three Florida contractors. 

The DOL found RTD Construction Inc. to be in violation of Davis-Bacon and related Acts requiring back wages of $268,000 to be paid to 40 employees. In addition, a debarment review has been requested since the contractor demonstrated a total disregard to both the DOL and NASA, the project owner, for the Revitalize KSC Water and Wastewater Systems, Phase 4. 

On the Bay Pines VA Hospital, TCLG submitted a Third Party complaint for two contractors:  Lake Mechanical Contractors, Inc. and  Randall Mechanical, Inc. 

The DOL found Lake Mechanical to be in violation of Davis-Bacon and related Acts requiring $9,000 to be paid to three employees for misclassification, resulting in underpayment. 

The DOL also found Randall Mechanical, Inc. in violation of Davis-Bacon and related Acts.  The contractor was required to pay back wages of $34,436.25 to two employees for improperly classifying employees, unpaid overtime and failure to pay health and welfare fringe benefits. Although, Randall Mechanical initially refused to pay the back wages, after several rounds of negotiations, an agreement was made. 

Debarment was not recommended for either contractor, as each had no prior DBA history. The DOL did not find reasonable cause to believe that Lake Mechanical nor Randall Mechanical committed willful or aggravated violations. 

Oklahoma compliance investigation nets workers' pay

Wiljo Interiors Inc. in Tulsa paid more than $200,000 in unpaid wages and benefits to 178 misclassified construction workers after an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour division. 

The investigation found that Wiljo violated overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act. The company also did not pay proper prevailing wage rates or fringe benefits under the Davis-Bacon Act. 

The TCLG compliance team monitored the project at the Riverside Indian Academic High School on behalf of the Oklahoma Construction and Building Trades and partnered with the DOL and the Bureau of Indian Affairs to bring these violations to light. 

Torres Consulting and Law Group (TCLG) is pleased to announce two new clients for Davis-Bacon compliance services; the Operating Engineers Local Union Local 627, located in Tulsa, OK and the Georgia/Carolina Pipe Trades. TCLG will be conducting compliance monitoring services on various state and federal construction projects to ensure workers are paid fairly.

"TCLG's Davis-Bacon compliance team makes a difference in increasing our clients' market share and protecting their jurisdiction," said TCLG Managing Partner Israel Torres. "We're happy to partner with Local 627 and the Georgia/Carolina Pipe Trades in our ongoing efforts to ensure contractors follow Davis-Bacon laws."

TCLG's compliance services makes sure contractors comply with prevailing wage laws. The TCLG Compliance Team audits certified payrolls, submits complaints to state and federal agencies when violations are uncovered and takes legal action, when necessary.

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President Obama Executive Order will require paid sick leave for federal contractor employees

On September 7, 2015, President Obama signed an Executive Order requiring covered federal contractors and subcontractors to provide paid sick leave for their employees. Additionally, the President directed the Secretary of Labor to issue the implementing regulations by September 30, 2016, and therefore, additional consistent rules may be included when the proposed and final regulations are published.

Under the Executive Order, federal contractors must provide at least one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Although a contractor can set a cap on the hours of paid sick leave an employee may accrue, it cannot be less than 56 hours per year. Additionally, accrued sick leave must carry over from one year to the next, and any accrued amount must be reinstated for employees rehired by a contractor within 12 months after a job separation. However, there is no stipulation for a contractor to payout to an employee upon sick leave for unused, accrued sick leave. 

Our Team

Managing Partner
Israel G. Torres

Laura Garcia

Torres Law Group
James Barton

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