Finance

Development firm accused of stealing $ 20 million from staff – finance and commerce

HARRISBURG, PA. – A major Pennsylvania contractor was accused Thursday of stealing tens of millions of dollars from his own workers by systematically violating state and federal wage laws for taxpayer-funded public infrastructure projects.

State College's Glenn O. Hawbaker Inc., a 70-year-old company that completed $ 1.7 billion in government transportation construction contracts between 2003 and 2018, was charged with four thefts.

The state's chief prosecutor called it a "massive, unprecedented fraud" and the largest case of its kind at the national level.

"The guys who did the groundbreaking work on the Pennsylvania streets had their retirement stolen to get into the pockets of the C-suite executives," Attorney General Josh Shapiro said at a news conference. He said there were thousands of victims.

Hawbaker said in a written statement, "While we believe we have always acted in accordance with all state and federal laws, the company immediately changed its prevailing wage practices" upon learning of the Attorney General's investigation.

The company said it will "continue to do what is right for our employees past and present" and seek a "quick resolution" of the case. Shapiro said Hawbaker is cooperating.

The attorney general said Hawbaker stole more than $ 20 million from employee fringe benefits like retirement and health insurance to use the money to improve bottom line, undercut competitors, and fund internal projects and company rewards.

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