A former Capital Bikeshare employee is accusing Alta of underpaying employees
Former employee Samuel Swenson has told the U.S. Labor Department that he was paid $13 hourly for work that should have been subject to the federal “bicycle repairer” rate of $14.43 hourly or “truck driver, light” at $15.66 hourly. Before he left Capital Bikeshare, Swenson said, he received a raise to $15 hourly but was not paid fringe benefits required under federal law.
And he claims he was due the federal "bicycle repairer" rate because their contract with DDOT
specifies that Capital Bikeshare must follow federal “prevailing wage” determinations, which are published regularly by the Labor Department.
Joanna P. Hawkins, a deputy regional director with the U.S. Labor Department, said the agency has an “active, open investigation” of Capital Bikeshare underway. But she declined to provide details on the probe, which is being conducted by the department’s Wage and Hour Division.
No one is saying much to the press, but one advocate of workers had this to add
Ari Weisbard, advocacy director for the D.C. Employment Justice Center, said many of those working for federal and District contractors are not aware of the prevailing-wage requirements, set out in the 1965 Service Contract Act.
This is not the first problem Alta has had with a former employee. In 2011, Alta stopped offering health insurance to part time employees, saying in April that
At the end of January, Alta made a difficult decision to align itself with current industry standards that do not extend benefits to part-time employees. We grandfathered in all employees who already had benefits. It was unfortunate, but this decision directly affected six people on staff who did not yet have benefits. We are pleased to say that all but one of those employees is still working at Capital Bikeshare.