FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 10, 2010
CA Labor Commissioner debars two Los Angeles area contractors from public works projects
Los Angeles—In ongoing enforcement efforts of the California public works laws, the State Labor Commissioner issued an Order of Debarment against Soo Dong Kim—dba Soo Kim Electric Company, and Hyo Nam Jung—dba Lucid Electric, prohibiting them from bidding on or receiving any public works projects for three years. The prohibition, officially known as a debarment, begins on April 19, 2010 and is ordered due to their deliberate and complete disregard of the public works laws.
“Our investigation revealed the contractors’ intent to defraud by coercing employees to lie about their wages, failing to pay proper prevailing wages and overtime and failing to keep records of employee work hours,” stated California Labor Commissioner Angela Bradstreet. “These deliberate and willful attempts to skirt the law will not be tolerated as they take unfair advantage of employees as well as tax payers who fund these public works projects.”
The Department of Industrial Relations’ (DIR) Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (Labor Commissioner’s Office) investigation uncovered violations of California’s public works laws at two separate school projects, both in Orange County. With the work done between 2007 and 2008, investigators uncovered evidence that Soo Kim Electric Company and Lucid Electric willfully and fraudulently:
The investigation revealed that one contractor, Lucid Electric, was involved in coaching employees to tell anyone who was inspecting the project that they received $51 per hour rather than the $16.25 that they were being paid. Investigators also found evidence that the contractors falsely reported dates, hours and rate of pay for employees.
“The debarment of these contractors is necessary to remove them from participating in public works projects and to put on notice other employers who may attempt to defraud the public entities awarding these contracts,” said DIR Director John C. Duncan. “This action is meant to inform public entities of those contractors banned from bidding on contracts and to help create a level playing field for legitimate employers operating in this tough economic climate.”
In 2009 the Labor commissioner signed orders debarring nine contractors and principals from public works contracts for violations of the California prevailing wage laws which are designed to ensure taxpayers’ monies are spent properly and that projects are administered according to law.
The DLSE adjudicates wage claims, investigates discrimination and public works complaints, and enforces state labor law and Industrial Welfare Commission wage orders. For more information on prevailing wage, visit DIR Web site at: http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlsr/.
Employees with work-related questions or complaints can call the Workers’ Information Hotline at 1-866-924-9757.
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