The Real Deal New York

Contractor reaches $1.2M settlement for failing to pay NYC construction workers

April 04, 2012 06:30PM
By Guelda Voien

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A settlement has been reached with a contractor who were accused of bilking workers out of pay for work at numerous construction projects in the city, according to a statement from the Office of the Comptroller of the City of New York today.

The firm, Mascon Restoration, will shell out $1.2 million and will be barred from bidding on or receiving any public works contracts for five years, according to Comptroller John Liu’s office. Minus a $107,120 penalty, the balance of the $1.2 million will go to the employees.

Promanagement, Delcor and JF Contracting were hired to inspect and identify New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development-owned buildings that were in need of repair or replacement, the statement said. The firms then hired Mascon to perform demolition, carpentry, and masonry work at four of those buildings, and Mascon underpaid employees there, according to the Comptroller’s office’s statement.

“Mascon acknowledges that it failed to pay prevailing wages and supplements to its employees… on the above named contracts,” the stipulation signed by the four companies, dated Feb. 9, said. Last week, Mascon signed a plea agreement with the district attorney’s office binding Mascon to plead guilty to the felony charge of offering a false instrument for filing, the DA’s office indicated. Mascon also admits to falsifying payroll records in the stipulation. A spokesperson for the DA’s office said a plea date hasn’t been set.

The comptroller’s office noted that although the workers were in many cases illegal immigrants, they were entitled to compensation under a 2007 New York state law.

The buildings busted in the comptroller’s investigation — 212-214 West 108th Street, 484 Convent Avenue, 1801 Seventh Avenue and 525 West 134th Street — were accused of operating sites that “failed to pay the prevailing wage,” in the settlement with Liu’s office.

The owner of JF Contracting indicated that his firm has not been held financially responsible for Mascon’s alleged crimes and that his firm’s involvement was not criminal. Delcor, Promanagement and Mascon were not immediately available for comment.

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