A Sustainable Workforce Starts With You

With the advent of the Arizona Immigration law, SB 1070, the filing of Amicus Briefs by 27 states, and the challenge to the Arizona law, many of us are not watching the Wage Theft and Employee Misclassification movement underway in a large number of states.This movement involves religious organizations like Interfaith Worker Justice and Centro de Trabajadores Unidos.  It has spread through Florida, New York, Chicago, Iowa, New Jersey, New Mexico and New Hampshire.  Most of the laws focus on the misclassification of workers as temporary or independent contractors where the result on the workers can be devastating and substantial.  The laws impose stiff penalties on employers in a broad range of industries who have a history of wage theft through misclassification.  
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August 05, 2010
SB 1070, the Arizona immigration bill passed and is in force, almost.  The US Department of Justice filed suit and won a restraining order to stop certain parts of the bill....
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August 03, 2010
The BP oil spill has taken a positive turn in the Gulf and the next issue for the major news media and all of the bloggers will be the happenings in Arizona.  The Arizona...
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July 28, 2010
We made mention of this subject in an earlier blog post and we have seen several other discussions that talk about the pros and cons of Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) as part...
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July 23, 2010
Construction company owners listen up.  According to an article in Finance Review, the IRS is undertaking 6,000 additional random audits over the next 3 years in order to...
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July 20, 2010
We recently attended the annual update meeting staged by Kiley Advisors in Houston.  One of the most interesting sessions had three speakers who discussed the plusses of Lean Construction and the legal changes underway as this process is integrated into the industry.  Interestingly I found a very good description of the overall process in Wikipedia.Basically the Lean Construction Management System is an adaptation of the Lean Production System utilized by Toyota in its production plants.
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July 03, 2010
Last year a survey of over 4,000 low-wage workers in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles was released in the report, Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers: Violations of Employment and Labor Laws in America’s Cities.  The work was completed by three groups – The Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois, The National Employment Law Project, and the UCLA Institute for Research on Labor and Employment.The purpose of the study was to take a look at the status of labor violations among the low-wage workers in those three cities.
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June 29, 2010
Mike Salsgiver, executive director of the Oregon-Columbia chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), recently wrote an interesting article about the state of...
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June 28, 2010
"The number of independent contractors in the total employed workforce grew from 6.7 percent in 1995 to 7.4 percent in 2005.  In 2005, there were 10.3 million independent contractors.  Independent contractors, in 2005, had an average age of 46 years, were almost twice as likely to be male than female, and almost two-thirds had some college or higher education.  Independent contractors were employed in a wide range of industries (such as professional services and construction) and occupations (including sales and management)."That is the opening paragraph from the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO)’s study on independent contractor misclassification in the construction industry (GAO-07-859T) released on May 8, 2010 in a hearing before the
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June 25, 2010
“Passing legislation that aims to crack down on ‘worker misclassification’ is an issue of fairness,” said Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) about his Employee Misclassification Prevention Act at a Senate Hearing entitled, Leveling the Playing Field: Protecting Workers and Businesses Affected by Misclassification. Brown originally introduced his bill, The Employee Misclassification Prevention Act, in the Senate last April.  It is the latest in a number of legislative actions directed at the problem that is especially rampant in the construction industry across the US.  Many contractors and subs are using hourly workers and day laborers, some of them undocumented aliens, and classifying their workers as independent contractors in order to cut costs, avoid paying medical benefits, social security and overtime as part of the cash society in the industry.
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June 22, 2010