The U.S. Department of Labor broke records on many fronts in 2019, notably recovering over $320 million in employee back wages and hosting 3,700 compliance education outreach events (more than any year in its history). In January they announced they will be hiring 45 new investigators and 15 new wage and hour technicians by March of this year. Now more than ever it is critical for prevailing wage contractors to make sure their employee compensation and benefits plans are fully compliant with all federal regulations. For contractors working under the Davis Bacon and Service Contract Acts, Fringe Benefits are a critical aspect of compliance. Just this month the Department of labor has already posted two violation cases specifically regarding the Davis Bacon Act and fringe benefits.
An electrical contractor based in Wisconsin paid over $200,000 in back-wages to 32 of its employees and an HVAC contractor based out of Louisiana paid out over $75,000 in back-wages to its employees. In both of these cases the Contractors failed to accurately classify employees and pay them the correct prevailing wage and fringe benefits as required by the Davis Bacon Act.
Service Contract Act enforcement is also on the rise. MLU Services Inc. was hired by the federal government to provide disaster recovery services in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. This January MLU paid out $184,838 in back wages for failing to provide its employees the accurate wage, overtime and fringe benefit rates under the SCA.
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