PHOENIX — The U.S. Department of Labor has recovered $198,085 in back wages for 23 workers employed by Glendale-based Tierra Contracting Inc. for willful violations of the Davis-Bacon and Related Acts and the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act. Tierra Contracting and its owner, Richard Juarez Sr., also have been debarred from applying for federally funded contracts for a period of three years because of the egregious nature of the violations found.
Investigators with the department’s Wage and Hour Division in Phoenix established that Tierra Contracting failed to pay the required prevailing wage rates and fringe benefits to power equipment operators, water truck drivers, pipe layers, grade setters and laborers working at the federally funded Northern Parkway highway project in Maricopa County. Tierra Contracting routinely submitted certified payroll records that did not accurately reflect the real hours worked by the affected employees. Employees were paid for overtime hours with separate checks, off-the-record and at straight-time rates, without the additional time-and-a-half, as required.