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Wages Archives

Off-the-Books Laborers Expose California Contractors to Severe Penalties

In California, the number of off-the-books and misclassified laborers has increased a dramatic 400% since 1972; likely the result of contractors' willingness to tap the fringes for cheaper labor in an effort to keep project costs to a minimum and maximize profits.  Of the nearly 900,000 construction workers in California, 143,900 workers provide off-the-books labor and another 39,800 are misclassified by their employer as independent contractors.  

Bi-partisan California State Senate Bill to Require Prevailing Wage

Senate Bill 7 seeks to close the loophole which has allowed California's 121 charter cities to remain exempt from California's prevailing wage regulations. The bill, largely viewed as a win for local contractors and the local labor force, has found opposition with municipalities' political representatives, who view the Bill as a further increase of the state's hold over the local government.

All state and local government agencies in California, with the exception of California's 121 charter cities, require contractors to pay prevailing wage, an hourly pay-and-benefits benchmark for workers, on taxpayer-funded projects. While most of the 121 charter cities also pay prevailing wage, some continue to use public funds to contract for projects without such a wage requirement.

CSLB Finds Millions in Unlicensed Construction Practices

The California Contractor State Licensing Board (CSLB) formed the Joint Enforcement Strike Force's (JESF) Construction Enforcement Project (CEP) to capitalize on multi-agency partnerships in a coordinated effort to enforce wage and licensure laws for contractors. The results have been staggering so far: 411 audit referrals for an estimated $48,553,626 in unreported wages; $25,832,017 in EDD and Franchise Tax Board outstanding tax and civil liability suspension amounts with $10,815,762 in penalties recovered; $17, 705, 752 in EDD tax and civil liability suspensions with $6,626, 208 in recovered tax liability; and additional license liability suspensions by the Department of Industrial Relations totaling $1,972,328 with $1,835,869 in penalties recovered.

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