Imperial Pacific underpaid staff, auditor says

Imperial Pacific, under auditory.
Imperial Pacific, under auditory.

The accusation comes from an independent auditor appointed by the Federal Court to carry out an investigation of the company.

Saipan.- Casino operator Imperial Pacific International is accused of not paying the mandated rates and wages to its employees.

The accusation comes from an independent auditor appointed by the Federal Court to carry out an investigation of the company.

The auditor Burger, Comer and Magliari LLC, said: “We believe that the CW-1 workers, and some U.S. workers were underpaid from Oct. 1, 2019 until their pay rates were increased.”

According to local newspaper Marianas Variety, in April 2019, IPI agreed to a consent judgment with the U.S. Department of Labor to settle and resolve the labor violations of former IPI construction contractors.

IPI agreed to pay USDOL — over four installments from 2019 to 2021 — $3.36million for back wages, liquidated damages, and civil monetary penalties.

It also agreed to cooperate with Burger, Comer, and Magliari, permitting the firm to enter the IPI worksite without prior notice so it could “inspect all of the physical facilities and working conditions of the worksite; inspect all books, records, and documents including employee time, payroll, and personnel records.”

The auditor randomly selected names of employees from the employee master list and the payroll registers to come in for interviews, with a total of 35 people brought in for questioning.

“The primary concern voiced by these 35 employees was the implementation of the prevailing wage based on the prevailing wage survey,” the Burger, Comer, and Magliari report said.

Employees stated during interviews that there was no time clock in their area that they could use to time in and time out. Instead they had to fill out time sheets manually.

In response, IPI human resources stated that “there may be employees in remote locations where there is no time clock.”

IPI also stated that it “actually [has] doubled the number of time clocks/biometric devices used to record employee work time.”

The report stated that employees in one department must still fill out their time sheets manually: “the area where they work is not conducive to maintaining sensitive equipment, as it is exposed to the elements.”

According to the report, IPI implemented a new timekeeping program in 2019.

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