RI Department of Labor and Training

PRESS RELEASE
 

DLT Continues Crackdown on Workplace Fraud

Second Enforcement Action Brings Amount of Penalties to over $1 Million

October 13, 2015

CRANSTON, RI — RI Department of Labor and Training Director Scott Jensen today announced another company is facing penalties for underpaying wages on a public project, fraudulently filling out weekly payroll records and wrongly misclassifying employees as independent contractors.

The DLT reached a decision against Mancieri Flooring Co. LLC on September 24. DLT ordered the company to pay $331,000 in civil penalties, interest and back wages and debarred it from doing work on any prevailing wage jobs in Rhode Island for three years. (See attached document.) On Sept. 1, Governor Gina M. Raimondo announced DLT’s $730,000 settlement agreement with Pawtucket-based Cardoso Construction LLC.

“Ensuring that workers get a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work is one of the ways we will help everyone make it in Rhode Island,” Governor Raimondo said. “Breaking the law not only hurts workers, it also hurts all of the Rhode Island companies that follow the rules, pay proper wages and help grow our economy.”

“Governor Raimondo has made workplace fraud enforcement one of our top priorities,” said Jensen. “We have strengthened our team that works on misclassification violations and continue to increase the effectiveness of our new Workplace Fraud Unit to bring more employers into compliance and protect workers.”

After an investigation by DLT’s Prevailing Wage Unit and a June 29 administrative hearing for which Kevin Mancieri failed to appear, DLT found that Mancieri Flooring (663 Warren Ave., East Providence, 02914):

  • Failed to pay the prevailing wage rate on flooring removal and installation work it was subcontracted to do at the University of Rhode Island from 2012 to 2014;

  • Failed to pay 17 employees the proper wage and overtime rates, paying an hourly wage of $12.50 to $25 — much lower than the applicable prevailing wage rate and/or the various hourly rates that Mancieri Flooring falsely reported on its certified payroll records;

  • Misclassified its 17 workers as independent contractors;

  • Continued a pattern of deceit in falsifying payroll records spotted earlier by the US Department of Labor in a separate federal prevailing wage project; and

  • Supplied false 1099 tax forms to the state for employees to try to hide that it was not paying the proper prevailing wages.

The company must pay $70,000 in back wages, a $210,000 civil penalty (three times the amount of wages due) and a $51,000 misclassification penalty ($3,000 times 17 employees).

 

ABOUT DLT: The RI Department of Labor and Training offers employment services, educational services and economic opportunities to both individuals and employers. DLT protects Rhode Island’s workforce by enforcing labor laws, prevailing wage rates and workplace health and safety standards. The department also provides temporary income support to unemployed and temporarily disabled workers. For more information, please call the RI Department of Labor and Training at (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at www.dlt.ri.gov

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