(Center Square) – Unscrupulous construction contractors are sacrificing Pittsburgh and federal tax dollars, members of the Pittsburgh Tax Evasion Task Force told members of the Pennsylvania Senate Labor Industry Commission at a hearing Tuesday.
Pittsburgh Task Force is a contractor who pays workers “under the table” or misclassifies workers as contract workers to avoid overtime, social security, worker accident compensation, or payment of medical expenses. Established in 2019 to deal with. They published a 94-page report to the Pittsburgh authorities earlier this year.
According to a news release from the Commission, about 54,000 construction workers live in the Pennsylvania region, and the construction industry is one of Pennsylvania’s largest employees.
The illegal activity of some contractors has a 30% advantage over contractors who do things legally. That is, we do not misclassify workers or use labor brokers, Task Force members told the committee. For example, according to Joel Niecgorski of the Eastern Atlantic Carpenter’s Regional Council, contractors who use labor brokers or misclassify workers have a $ 100 million contract that gives them a $ 12 million advantage over other bidders. is.
“The construction industry is a well-known paradise for companies that misclassify workers, neglect to withhold, ignore laws aimed at ensuring a safe workplace, and take advantage of worker exploitation. We support community erosion by weakening the tax base that supports payments for ponders, schools, parks and infrastructure, “said Steve Mazza and Task Force Chairman of Pittsburgh Building Trade.
A Task Force analysis estimates that 40 construction workers pay in cash, resulting in a weekly loss of $ 8,520 on uncollected state and local taxes.
They said that some construction companies also use subcontractors who do not have insurance or proper licenses.
The Task Force recommendations for the Mayor of Pittsburgh are:
• Improve the definition of construction contractors to include subcontractors, etc.
• Strengthening penalties for labor violations
• Tighter regulations on the use of public subsidies
• Build stronger relationships with local judges
• Create protection for workers reporting violations
Commission Chair R-Washington Senator Camera Bartrotta said the Task Force’s recommendations would serve as a guide to state legislators in developing legislation to protect workers and taxpayers. It was.
“We have already lost a lot of investment in Pennsylvania. We cannot continue to lose the capital and funds that should be legally invested,” Bartrotta said. “We are chasing talented and hard-working people from Pennsylvania because they can’t compete.”
Contractors who violate the rules hurt their honest competitors, the state’s income, Pennsylvania lawmakers said.Status
Source link Contractors who violate the rules hurt their honest competitors, the state’s income, Pennsylvania lawmakers said.Status