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Mass. fines Manchester construction firm $160K for not paying workers more on taxpayer-funded projects

July 14. 2017 1:50AM

BOSTON — A New Hampshire construction company was fined more than $160,000 in restitution and penalties by the state of Massachussetts for failing to pay employees the proper wage and overtime for nine public works projects completed between 2014 and 2015.

Attorney General Maura Healey’s Office issued three citations against Manchester-based Northeast Partition Specialties Inc. and owner Fredrick Breth, who were also accused of failing to submit accurate payroll records.

“Companies that do business in Massachusetts must play by the rules,” Healey said in a statement Wednesday. “Prevailing wage laws are intended to ensure a level playing field for companies and provide a real, living wage to workers.”

The Attorney General’s Office began investigating Northeast after its Fair Labor Division received a complaint from a former employee alleging he was not paid the prescribed prevailing wage rate for two public works projects between April 2015 and September 2015. Under the Massachusetts Prevailing Wage Law, contractors and subcontractors working on public projects must pay their employees a special minimum wage, which is based on the occupational classification for the type of work the employees perform.

The investigation revealed that between 2014 and 2015, Northeast failed to pay the proper prevailing wage rate to 27 employees for nine public works projects, including the SSGT James J. Hill School in Revere, the Bresnahan Elementary School in Newburyport and the Acushnet Police Facility.

Since the investigation began, Northeast has paid $115,403.97 in restitution to employees and fully cooperated with the Attorney General’s Office, according to a news release.


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