Wage Theft Act Defanged

On January 12, Senator Dilan voted against a measure (S.1319) that severely weakens the ability to investigate and prosecute existing and future complaints of wage theft.Last year amendments to the Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2010 were signed into law by Governor Cuomo. The legislation established increased penalties, required reporting of violations, and gave the Commissioner of Labor the ability and resources to investigate complaints spanning the newly adopted six-year statute of limitations.S. 1319, which passed the Senate 45-17, repeals the provision requiring the Commissioner of Labor to automatically investigate and assess greater civil penalties for employers with additional violations within the last six years.Furthermore, the legislation completely defunds the Wage theft prevention enforcement account created in 2014 to assist in the investigation and enforcement of wage theft. Already inundated with complaints of minimum wage and overtime violations, the taking of tips and unaccounted for work hours, the amendment passed on January 12 severely diminishes the Wage Theft Act’s ability to remedy past and future cases of wage theft.