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Attorney General's News Release

December 21, 2009

Attorney General Koster says Neosho man convicted for prevailing wage violations, placed on contractor debarment list

Jefferson City, Mo. - Attorney General Chris Koster today announced a Neosho man has been sentenced to fourteen days in jail and placed on Missouri's contractor debarment list for one year after being found guilty of violating Missouri's prevailing wage law.

Koster said being on the debarment list means Michael B. Robin and any company he owns cannot contract directly or indirectly with any public body for the construction of any public works for that period of time. This is the first time in state history that the Attorney General's office has placed a prevailing wage violator on the statewide debarment list.

In June, Koster filed criminal charges against Mr. Robin, who did business as Plumbco, Inc. Koster said Robin was required to follow prevailing wage laws when hired as a subcontractor to work on Joplin R-8 Junior High School in Jasper County. Instead, Robin falsified records to make it appear that workers worked fewer hours than they had worked and to make it look as if he had paid workers the prevailing wage, as required by law. In reality, workers worked full-time for less than the prevailing wage rate.

"Missouri's prevailing wage law is clear and there should be no excuses for violating it," Koster said. "This Attorney General's office takes prevailing wage violations seriously and intends to ensure its mandate is followed in our state. It is appropriate that such lawbreakers are barred from working on public jobs for an appropriate period of time."

Koster noted the last time an individual was placed on the debarment list was in 2005. In addition to Robin, ten people have been placed on the debarment list since 1992, with four of those prosecuted by Koster when he was Cass County Prosecutor.

Robin was found guilty on three counts of violating the prevailing wage law. In addition to being placed on the debarment list, Robin was sentenced to two years' probation and must repay more than $3,400 in restitution to three workers. Robin's fourteen-day jail sentence is suspended unless he violates the law again. The Missouri Labor Department's Division of Labor Standards referred the case to the Attorney General following an investigation.

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