Source: U.S. Department of Labor; CP staff
In the wake of a Labor Department Wage and Hour Division (WHD) investigation, Loveland, Colo.-based building and flatwork contractor Coloscapes Concrete Inc. has paid $21,750 in back wages and $31,496 in civil penalties to settle H-2B non-immigrant visa program violations, plus $6,454 to resolve Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime and recordkeeping violations.
WHD found the contractor violated H-2B program provisions by collecting a $1,000 recruitment fee in cash from workers and accepting kickbacks from reimbursement checks intended to compensate employees for visa fees and inbound transportation costs from their home countries. Coloscapes Concrete further violated provisions when it paid U.S. workers less than similarly employed guest workers, and when it laid off U.S. workers shortly before hiring guest workers to perform the same work, WHD contends. The contractor also failed to pay legally required overtime to 27 cement masons and concrete finishers, and maintain complete and accurate records. The overtime violations resulted when payroll deductions for employees’ housing exceeded FLSA limits.
“The U.S. Department of Labor ensures the recruitment and displacement standards of the H-2B program are followed in order to protect American workers,” says WHD Administrator Betty Campbell. “We encourage employers to reach out to our local offices for confidential assistance with any of our labor laws.”