FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IR # 97-64
Wednesday, December 31, 1997

CONTACT:
Rick Rice
Dean Fryer
(415) 972-8835


LABOR COMMISSIONER COLLECTS AND PAYS $761,887 IN WAGES DUE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA AVIATION EMPLOYEES

SAN FRANCISCO -- Department of Industrial Relations Acting Director John C. Duncan announced today that the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) has mailed out $761,887 in checks for back wages due to former employees of Southern California Aviation. The Santa Barbara aerospace company had closed its doors in 1994 without giving prior notice and final paychecks to its nearly 300 employees.

"Needless to say, resolving a case of this magnitude and complexity requires tremendous effort by our Santa Barbara office," Duncan said. "As a result of the diligence exhibited by the DLSE staff in handling the 297 cases filed by the employees of Southern California Aviation, we were successful in obtaining judgments against the company for back wages due."

Southern California Aviation, an airplane refurbishing company at Santa Barbara airport closed without giving notice or final paychecks to employees. Federal law requires companies with more than 100 employees to let workers and local government know about closures 60 days in advance.

Southern California Aviation had several pieces of property which had been sold to settle liens filed against them by creditors. It wasn't until the company sold its last piece of property that the judgments against them for back wages were satisfied.

"Our office has assisted the employees in filing claims for wages due and has secured judgments against Southern California Aviation," said State Labor Commissioner, Jose Millan. "The company sold its final asset, an airplane hanger in Mojave, which provided sufficient funds to fully satisfy our judgments against them."

All checks for back wages, ranging from $689 to $28,192, have been mailed out. Former employees who have filed claims and may have moved and have not yet notified DLSE of an address change, should contact the DLSE office in Santa Barbara at 805-562-1232 if they have not receive a check.

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