News & Updates

September 29, 2017

Tree company Asplundh to pay largest fine ever for hiring undocumented workers

September 28, 2017

Asplundh Tree Experts, Co. pays largest civil settlement agreement ever levied by ICE

September 21, 2017

Union workers win $76M from Midtown construction firm that used alter-ego company to skirt collective bargaining (

September 20, 2017

America's continued construction labor crisis

September 3, 2017

Breaking down barriers: Pre-apprenticeship program works to open doors to skilled trades union jobs

September 1, 2017

Construction Worker Shortage Could Weigh on Harvey Recovery

NEW YORK — A nationwide shortage of construction workers may slow rebuilding efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, which caused extensive flood damage to homes and businesses and is set to be one of the costliest natural disasters in U.S. history. Nine years after the housing bust drove an estimated 30 percent of construction workers into new fields, the supply of skilled and unskilled labor remains tight at all levels of experience, according to the National Association of Homebuilders. In Texas alone, which is in the middle of a building boom, 69 percent of contractors were having trouble filling positions before the storm hit, according to a survey from the Associated General Contractors of America.
August 30, 2017

New Focus on Apprenticeships - New Jersey Business Magazine

Ideally, a business could hire someone right out of school or off the street to fill a job opening and get a new employee who has been properly trained for the position. Anyone who has tried to hire someone recently knows this is not the world in which we live. The need for skilled workers continues to grow, both in New Jersey and nationally, and that need has brought new life to an old idea – apprenticeships. New Jersey’s skilled labor shortage is one of the biggest. We have more job openings per-capita than any other state in the nation except one. It’s not just a lack of college graduates; many businesses have jobs that require specific technical skills that still require post-secondary education, just not a full bachelor’s degree. An apprenticeship could help fill this void. It’s an on-the-job training program that allows an employee to learn a craft or trade while being employed and paid by the company or organization sponsoring the training. Most trade unions have apprenticeships, but now the idea is expanding to other types of businesses that need employees in the middle skill level. An employer does not need government permission to start an apprenticeship program, but any job that requires certification or a license will likely need to be a registered apprenticeship.
August 28, 2017

$100 Million Money Laundering Scheme

June 15, 2017

Contractor accused of scamming $1.5M arrested in South Carolina

Make sure a home improvement contractor is registered with the state before you hire one. STAFF iPHONE VIDEO BY DAVID P. WILLIS Jamie Lynn Lawson (Photo: South Carolina Department of Corrections) CONNECT TWEET LINKEDIN COMMENT EMAIL MORE A home contractor who was on the run since he was accused in December of stealing more than $1.5 million from numerous clients was arrested Thursday morning at an extended-stay hotel in Florence, South Carolina, according to the U.S. Marshal's office in New Jersey. James "Jamie" Lynn Lawson, 42, the owner of Brick-based Lawson Renovations LLC/J&N Construction, was considered a fugitive and wanted by the U.S. Marshals and the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office, the agency that began an investigation into the contractor's business. Lawson went on the lam in mid-December, shortly after he was indicted in Ocean County Superior Court on theft and fraud charges. ALSO: Sandy contractor indicted on fraud charges Authorities alleged Lawson skipped from state to state in search of natural disasters and people who relied on contractors to rebuild their homes in the wake of chaos. He moved to New Jersey shortly around the time Superstorm Sandy ravaged the Jersey shore in 2012. The Division of Consumer Affairs, the agency that licenses numerous types of contractors, authorized Lawson's application to become a home improvement contractor, reportedly unaware he had criminal convictions in other states. Jamie Lawson, 41, of Brick. Jamie Lawson, 41, of Brick. (Photo: Ocean County Prosecutor's Office) Over the years, Lawson lived in numerous states but was accused of offenses often related to fraud and theft in Texas, North Carolina and South Carolina. Watch the video at the top of this page to learn how to hire the right contractor. ALSO: Sandy contractor on the lam Since Lawson became a fugitive in December, the Ocean County Prosecutor's office said the contractor moved around these various southern states: Austin, TX Dallas, TX Addison, TX Denton, TX Irving, TX Houston, TX Port Lavaca, TX Rowland, NC Fairmount, NC Lumberton, NC Bishopville, SC Greenville, TN Siloam, GA Livingston, AL Sedalia, MO St. Louis. MO Tulsa, OK Quapaw, OK Mendenhall, MS Brandon, MS Florence, MS Jackson, MS Magee, MS Lawson is at a local jail in South Carolina, according to NJ Advance Media. He is expected to be extradited to New Jersey.
April 23, 2017

Worcester carpenters’ union to hold Front Street rally

WORCESTER — A rally protesting a subcontractor allegedly paying below area wages and benefits will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday outside 145 Front St., where construction of a rental housing complex is underway. In an announcement about the rally, Carpenters Local 107 of Worcester said that subcontractor P&B Partitions of West Berlin, New Jersey, which is working on the complex, has a history of wage and hour violations.
March 27, 2017

OSHA investigates New Square construction fall

A construction worker was transported to Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla on Friday after he fell from the second-floor of a work site in the Village of New Square.
March 23, 2017

Picatinny Arsenal employee charged with conspiracy to defraud U.S., bribery

A Stroudsburg, Pa., man working for the U.S. Army at Picatinny Arsenal has been charged with conspiracy to defraud the country and accepting bribes for allegedly asking for and accepting bribes for government and personal work, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.
March 6, 2017

Building 'in the shadows': N.J. trade unions hope to reinvigorate discussion on regulating underground construction economy

The way Bill Sproule sees it, there are no winners in New Jersey's underground construction economy.
March 2, 2017

Union Fund Uses NY False Claims Act to Blow Whistle on Prevailing Wage Violator and Recover $33,750

In the first reported case of its kind in New York, in February a union fund received a five-figure settlement payment from a Harlem-based general contractor that worked on a New York City affordable housing project after the fund blew the whistle on the contractor’s failure to pay prevailing wages. The fund filed a whistleblower complaint under the N.Y. False Claims Act, which allows a whistleblower to file a qui tam lawsuit if it knows of and reports violations of the Act. The Act makes liable entities that knowingly present to the state or local government false or fraudulent claims for payment or avoid their obligations to pay the state or a local government. State of New York v. A. Aleem Construction, Inc.
February 14, 2017

N.J. company named among worst for wage theft fined $3.2 million

The New York City Comptroller levied a huge fine on a Parsippany company that cheated dozens of workers, mostly immigrant laborers, out of millions of dollars in wages for work on city projects. K.S. Contracting, owned by Paresh Shah, was ordered to pay $3.2 million and will also be barred from receiving state contracts for five years.
February 14, 2017

Parsippany contractor fined $3.2M for underpaying immigrant labor

New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer on Tuesday assessed $3.2 million in fines against a Parsippany-based contractor for cheating dozens of workers out of the prevailing wages and benefits they were owed under the New York State Labor Law.
February 13, 2017

Charged Developer Also Built Crystal Run Projects

The developer for two projects in the Hudson Valley that the Cuomo administration awarded $25 million - even though they were already being built - was Columbia Development, the Albany-based firm whose principal is facing a state bid-rigging charge in a unrelated matter.
February 13, 2017

More people needed in the skilled trades, experts say

Not enough workers are going into the building trades, and that could place a speed bump on economic development effort in the Mohawk Valley, experts say. "It's hard to find a young man that wants to go into the trades. Or a woman," said Bobby Catrombone, owner of RFC Contracting Inc. in Utica.
February 10, 2017

Trades shortage looming

An increasing shortage of experienced restoration trades people has led to concern about the future preservation of historical homes and landmarks across the region. The Landmark Society of Western New York Inc. has taken up the cause to bolster a dwindling workforce that it fears could not be replaced once current craftsmen retire. The trades include specialized work in masonry, window restoration and roof repair.
February 8, 2017

LPCiminelli Claims Bid-Rigging Case Has Cost Company Billions

An attorney for fomer LPCiminelli CEO Louis Ciminelli claimed the Buffalo-based development company has lost $3.88 billion dollars worth of inventory and work because of the company’s alleged involvement in a bid-rigging scheme. According to documents filed with the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York, about 21 contracts were lost or canceled in 2015 and 2016.
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