Irvine’s gymnastics business fined $ 1.3 million for wage theft – Orange County Register

Perfect Point Corp., which operates the South Coast Gymnastics Studio in Irvine, has been fined $ 1.3 million for allegedly failing to pay 28 workers for meal breaks and rest, resulting in some fewer employees than earned $ 5.

South Coast is a USA Gymnastics member club where gymnasts train to compete in national tournaments. The violations were discovered when investigators from the California Labor Commissioner’s office visited the facility at 17850 Sky Park Circle on November 16 as part of a COVID-19 compliance assessment.

After finding that coaches and administrative staff were underpaid, an audit found a total of 28 workers who were underpaid during the infringement period.

“Under California law, workers must be paid for all hours worked,” said Labor Commissioner Lilia García-Brower. “Everything else is wage theft.”

The breakdown

On March 8, regulators issued quotes and wages totaling $ 1,320,450 against Perfect Point and owner Xiaoping Li. This includes minimum wages, meal times, rest periods, contract wages, and waiting penalties of $ 590,689, and employee interest of $ 342,765.

Additional civil penalties of $ 386,996 were imposed for minimum wage, lunch break, rest break, payment deadline, and payroll violations.

South coast answers

When contacted on Friday, South Coast Gymnastics co-founder Jia Wen made the following statement:

South Coast has always worked to comply with California wage laws, ”the company said. “We have appealed against the quote and hope that we can solve all problems with further discussions with the office of the labor commissioner.”

If workers receive less than the minimum wage, they are entitled to liquidated damages equal to the amount of the underpaid minimum wage plus interest. Waiting penalties are imposed if the employer deliberately fails to pay all the wages that the employee is entitled to at the time of separation.

The penalty is calculated by multiplying the employee’s daily wage by the number of days the employee was not paid, up to a maximum of 30 days.

Some stories

South Coast Gymnastics, which opened in 1997, offers gymnastics for boys and girls of all ages and abilities. Li and Wen both competed in gymnastics for the Chinese national team at the Olympic level for a decade.

Xiaoping was the first world champion of the Chinese men’s gymnastics team for pommel horses in 1981. He won a gold medal in the men’s team in 1983, the first time China has ever won a team gold medal.

Jia won a silver medal in the women’s team for China in 1981, a gold medal for balance beam at the World University Games in 1983, and a gold medal for floor exercise at the Asian Games in 1982.

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