FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IR #07-13
March 23, 2007

CONTACT:
Jana Leiran
Dean Fryer
(415) 703-5050


Los Angeles car wash enforcement sweeps conducted by EEEC

Los Angeles – Investigators with the Economic and Employment Enforcement Coalition (EEEC) targeted businesses in the car wash industry on March 16 and 17 who were operating illegally. A total of 20 car wash establishments were visited in Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley.

EEEC is a multi-agency task force designed to root out California’s underground economy. In last week’s enforcement sweep of car wash establishments, the EEEC targeted businesses that avoid labor, tax and licensing laws, safety and health regulations and carry no workers’ compensation insurance for their employees in order to gain a competitive economic advantage over legitimate businesses that follow the law.

“Our enforcement efforts in the car wash industry continue to find businesses operating without the required registration,” said EEEC Executive Director David Dorame. “The law changed last year requiring the registration of car washes as a way to provide protections for both employees and employers in this industry in California. “

The results of the sweep are as follows:

Number of inspections....................................20
Number of citations issued.............................33
Total citation amounts.....................................$323,400
Number of unregistered car washes............ 16

Citations issued for..........................................no workers’ compensation, not taking required payroll deductions, not requiring proper work permits for minors and not paying proper minimum wage and overtime....

Launched in July’05 with the full support of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, the EEEC was formed with a dual mission: To enforce California labor laws, and to educate business owners and workers on those laws and regulations. On the enforcement side, the EEEC aims to root out businesses participating in the underground economy, which cost the state and legitimate businesses millions each year, in many cases passing the costs on to the consumer. In addition, EEEC helps educate business owners on California’s employment laws and their responsibilities, and educates employees on their rights as workers.

EEEC is a collaboration of the Labor and Workforce Development Agency’s Department of Industrial Relations (Division of Occupational Safety and Health; Division of Labor Standards Enforcement) and the Employment Development Department. The U.S. Department of Labor participates in the EEEC, as well as the Contractors State License Board when targeting the construction industry....

The EEEC conducts enforcement sweeps in various industries, including garment, agriculture, construction, horse race track, car wash, janitorial and restaurant, which have been identified as having a high degree of workplace violations and lack of regulatory compliance. EEEC also holds workshops throughout the state to educate employers and workers on labor and wage issues. For more information on the EEEC, please visit our website at www.dir.ca.gov.

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