Supervisor Solis Leads County Effort to Protect Workers From Wage Theft

Los Angeles, CA- Today, the L.A. County Board of Supervisors introduced an ordinance relating to the enforcement of the County Minimum Wage ordinance, set to take effect in unincorporated areas of the County on July 1st, 2016.The ordinance empowers the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA) to establish a wage enforcement program.

“Today is a unique and exciting day for L.A. County, because we are taking the next step to solve a problem that both employers and employees agree is a crisis for fair competition and dignity at work,” said Supervisor Solis.

The new wage enforcement ordinance will require employers to pay qualifying employees no less than the established County minimum wage and requires employers to provide notices and maintain records. Additionally, this ordinance prohibits retaliation against employees that chose to exercise their wage protection rights, and establishes fines and penalties for violations. The ordinance also designates the Director of the DCBA as the enforcement officer responsible for investigating violations of County wage ordinances and for creating a violation appeal process.

“This is a great day for Los Angeles County. I commend the Board of Supervisors, for their commitment to helping individuals rise out of poverty and ensuring that honest work gets fair pay,” stated Brian J. Stiger, the Director of DCBA. “Come July 1, we will be ready to enforce the new minimum wage ordinance.”

“We have created an ordinance that is fair to business, but also offers clear and strong enforcement tools. DCBA has already gathered a team of proactive inspectors that have conducted 55 door-to-door educational visits with businesses to explain the new Minimum Wage coming in July, as well as the other services that our County offers,” commented Supervisor Solis.

Tracy Rafter, founding CEO of the Los Angeles County Business Federation (BizFed), weighed in with the following comment:

“We appreciate the work that has gone into this ordinance, especially Supervisor Solis actively seeking and incorporating input from the business community.  By providing a real-world perspective on issues like payroll management, for example, BizFed members have directly contributed to and improved this ordinance.  Through that kind of dialogue and collaboration, the end result is a reasonable, balanced ordinance.”

Rusty Hicks, the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO and co-convener of the Campaign to Raise the Wage noted:

“Today’s landmark decision by the Board of Supervisors means that every worker in unincorporated Los Angeles County will no longer have to live in fear of unpaid wages. L.A. County’s working families will now be able to see the value of an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay.”

The Los Angeles Coalition Against Wage Theft offered this statement:

“Every day across Los Angeles County thousands of dollars in restaurants, car washes, garment factories, and constructions sites are lost to wage theft. Through the creation of a wage enforcement program L.A. County takes a bold step forward to make $15 a reality for all workers. The Los Angeles Coalition Against Wage Theft looks forward to working with the County Board of Supervisors and the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs to develop a wage enforcement office with robust funding and community partnerships to ensure honest work is rewarded with fair pay.”

Contact: Rachel A. Estrada, 213-974-4111 or