California Labor Commissioner Issues Fines of $267,600 During Statewide Enforcement Activity

November 21, 2008

Investigators from the California Labor Commissioners’ Office issued 71 citations totaling $267,600 in fines in a two-day statewide enforcement sweep of businesses in the agricultural industry including nurseries, greenhouses, landscapers, farm labor contractors, dairies, growers and other agricultural businesses.

Forty eight businesses that were inspected received fines of $198,000 for failure to provide workers’ compensation coverage for their employees and stop orders were immediately issued prohibiting the use of employee labor until they obtained workers’ compensation insurance.

“Employers must maintain workers’ compensation insurance,” said California Labor Commissioner Angela Bradstreet. “If they continue to operate without the proper coverage we will refer the case to the local district attorney’s office for possible criminal prosecution.”

More than $64,000 in fines were levied against 16 businesses for failure to provide employees a wage deduction statement or failure to keep records as required under subdivision (a) of Section 226 of the Labor Code.

“Our goal is to protect workers from unfair treatment by unscrupulous employers and provide a more competitive environment for law-abiding businesses,” Bradstreet said.

The statewide enforcement sweep ended on Nov. 6 and covered 25 counties with investigators visiting 269 employers. Los Angeles County had the largest number of inspections, followed by Orange, Monterey and San Diego counties.

The DLSE adjudicates wage claims, investigates discrimination and public works complaints, and enforces state labor law and Industrial Welfare Commission wage orders.

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Source: DIR

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