Federal contractor pays nearly half of a million dollars in back wages to 204 detention officers
Guards denied prevailing wages, fringe benefits and overtime compensation
Employer name: PTS of America LLC doing business as Prisoner Transportation Services of America, Nashville, Tennessee
Investigation sites: PTS corporate headquarters, Nashville, Tennessee; Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, Mesa, Arizona; Alexandria International Airport, Alexandria, Louisiana; and San Antonio International Airport, San Antonio, Texas.
Investigation findings: PTS of America LLC is a prisoner extradition company and an international transporter of detainees. The firm is a subcontractor of CSI Aviation Services Inc., a prime contractor for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at several airports.
Wage and Hour Division investigators found that PTS violated the McNamara O'Hara Service Contract Act by failing to pay detention officers the required prevailing wages along with health and welfare fringe benefits. Additionally, the contractor violated the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act by failing to properly calculate and pay overtime compensation to 77 employees. As a result of these violations, PTS owed 204 employees back wages of $430,788 under the SCA and an additional $14,927 in overtime back wages under CWHSSA. PTS also violated Executive Order 13495 by failing to offer jobs to three employees who were employed with the previous contractor. The order requires that workers on a federal service contract who would otherwise lose their jobs as a result of the completion or expiration of a contract be given the right of first refusal for employment with the successor contractor.
Resolution: CSI Aviation Services Inc. has paid a total of $445,715 in back wages, which is being distributed to 204 employees. Under the SCA, a contractor is held financially responsible for monetary wage violations committed by its subcontractors. PTS has agreed to future compliance with SCA, CWHSSA and the Fair Labor Standards Act. Additionally, the company agreed to rehire the three workers who were not offered jobs and paid back wages to them as part of separate administrative action by the National Labor Relations Board.
Quote: "Enforcement of the prevailing wage laws levels the playing field for all contractors and protects the wages of hard-working, middle-class American workers. The Wage and Hour Division will remain vigilant in its enforcement to ensure employees are paid in accordance with prevailing wage laws." said Nettie Lewis, director of the division's Nashville District Office. "We are pleased that we were able to successfully collaborate with the contracting agency and the prime and subcontractor to get these hardworking employees the wages they rightfully earned."