Feds force Mississippi landscaper to repay back overtime pay to workers

Published 5:03 pm Thursday, June 6, 2019

A Mississippi landscaping company has been forced to repay approximately $45,000 in back wages and damages to 11 employees for violating overtime laws, the U.S. Department of Labor reported Thursday.

After a federal investigation, Gulf Breeze Landscaping LLC – based in Gautier, Mississippi – has paid $44,832 in back wages and liquidated damages to 11 employees for violating overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

The DOL’s wage and hour division investigators found that Gulf Breeze Landscaping LLC paid only straight-time rates to employees without regard to how many hours they worked. This practice resulted in overtime violations when the employer failed to pay time-and-a-half for hours employees worked beyond 40 in a workweek, as the law requires.

“Employers are responsible for ensuring they pay employees properly for all the hours that they work,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Daniel White, in Jacksonville, Florida. “We encourage employers to contact us with any questions they may have, and to use the variety of tools we offer to help them understand their obligations and to comply with the law. Violations like these can be avoided.”

Gulf Breeze Landscaping worked in Florida’s Walton, Holmes, Washington, and Jackson counties on recovery efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael.