Business

Roofer gets caught shorting workers $265,000 in pay and gets fined as a repeat violator

dneal@MiamiHerald.com

A Tampa area roofer seems to have a hard time figuring out how to properly pay its workers.

Orion Builders Service has paid $265,001 in owed back pay to 67 workers — that’s $3,955.24 per worker — then got dunned $17,753 “for repeat violations,” the Department of Labor announced.

State of Florida records say Orion is based in Thonotossassa, out of the same office as Hugh MacDonald Construction, a company carrying the name of Orion’s founder and sole director.

Labor said Orion paid workers a “piece rate,” a method of paying per unit produced that doesn’t take time into account.

“This practice resulted in violations when employees worked more than 40 hours in a workweek, but the employer failed to pay them overtime in addition to their piece rates,” Labor said.

Also, investigators found Orion didn’t keep proper daily or weekly records of hours worked. As incongruous as this record-keeping violation seems for a business comprised mostly of employees paid hourly wages, it’s common in businesses busted for shorting workers on pay.

“Even if employees are paid piece rates, or on salaries, they could be due overtime when they work more than 40 hours in a week,” Wage and Hour Division District Director Daniel White said in a statement. “The outcome of this investigation is a good reminder to review pay practices to ensure employees are being paid as the law requires.”

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Since 1989, David J. Neal’s domain at the Miami Herald has expanded to include writing about Panthers (NHL and FIU), Dolphins, old school animation, food safety, fraud, naughty lawyers, bad doctors and all manner of breaking news. He drinks coladas whole. He does not work Indianapolis 500 Race Day.

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