News Release

U.S. Department of Labor Investigation Results in Owner of Five Central Florida Hotels Paying $23,368 in Back Wages and Damages to Employees

ST. PETERSBURG, FL – After an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD), Michael Andoniades – the owner of five St. Petersburg, Florida, hotels – has paid $23,368 in back wages and liquidated damages to 30 employees for violating overtime and recordkeeping provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

The five St. Petersburg hotels involved in the investigation are:

  • Hollander Hotel, 421 4th Ave. North;
  • Avalon Hotel LLC, 443 4th Ave. North;
  • Bay Plaza Hotel, 419 3rd Ave. North;
  • Mari Jean Hotel LLC, 2349 Central Ave.; and
  • Lenox Hotel LLC, 325 6th Ave. North.

WHD investigators determined that when employees worked at the Hollander Hotel and the Avalon Hotel during the same workweek, the employers failed to combine those hours when determining whether overtime was due. This practice resulted in overtime violations when those hours totaled more than 40, yet the employers failed to pay overtime – instead paying employees separately for the hours they worked at each location, at straight time. WHD also found that the employers incorrectly classified one salaried maintenance employee as exempt from the FLSA’s overtime requirements and subsequently failed to pay the worker overtime for hours worked beyond 40 in a workweek.

“Owners at establishments that share employees do not have the right to treat each establishment as separate from the others when determining an employee’s total hours and the wages that worker is rightfully due,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director James Schmidt, in Tampa, Florida. “The Wage and Hour Division is readily available to assist employers and employees in understanding their obligations and rights under the law.”

The Department offers numerous resources to ensure employers have the tools they need to understand their responsibilities and to comply with federal law, such as online videos, confidential calls, or in-person visits to local WHD offices.

For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the WHD, contact the toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Employers who discover overtime or minimum wage violations may self-report and resolve those violations without litigation through the PAID program. Information is also available at https://www.dol.gov/whd.

WHD’s mission is to promote and achieve compliance with labor standards to protect and enhance the welfare of the Nation's workforce. WHD enforces Federal minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and child labor requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act. WHD also enforces the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, the Employee Polygraph Protection Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, wage garnishment provisions of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, and a number of employment standards and worker protections as provided in several immigration related statutes. Additionally, WHD administers and enforces the prevailing wage requirements of the Davis Bacon Act and the Service Contract Act and other statutes applicable to Federal contracts for construction and for the provision of goods and services.

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

Agency
Wage and Hour Division
Date
August 14, 2019
Release Number
19-1374-ATL
Contact: Eric R. Lucero
Phone Number
Contact: Michael D'Aquino
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