Category Archives: TEAMREGIME

PPI….HUD…DBA…and Of Course…Labor

Organics Admin
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Organics Admin

COO at Aladay LLC
Organic Farmer, Property Preservation Specialist and Custom Glass & Wood Worker. Blogger extraordinaire...
Organics Admin
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For some time now many have wondered how the Davis-Bacon Act (DBA ) affects the Property Preservation Industry (PPI). Many think it has no bearing on the PI unless an individual property goes over X-amount of money.
One of those people, IMHO, has misinterpreted the wording of the act. Gene O’Neil, VP of For What It’s Worth, feels that the DBA is only in play if the “bid” is over $2000.00. Mr. O’Neill has been an outspoken voice for Labor in South Florida these past couple years…
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Mr. O’Neill was also a key player in assisting a former member of the National Association of Mortgage Field Services, Bret Douglas, in establishing FAST. An organization designed to assist Labor. I caught up with Bret thus past week and talked about “diversification”, before we get to that conversation lets us address the DBA and the precise wording that puts it in play when any if you sign a contract with the Federal Government, or are completing work for a government agency.
The exact wording us as follows…

The Davis-Bacon Act, as amended, requires that each contract over $2,000 to which the United States or the District of Columbia is a party for the construction, alteration, or repair of public buildings or public works shall contain a clause setting forth the minimum wages to be paid to various classes of laborers and …

Notice the word is contract…not bid…many may not know this but there are cases in the courts over this issue. I said it six years ago and I will say it again. Those that actually have payroll records will come out ok. Those without…you have left a tremendous amount of money on the table. I have been screaming…pay yourself at the end of the week…many think I enjoy hearing my annoying ass talk.
The reality is:

I. Without paying yourself you have no way of knowing exactly how much a service costs to complete
II. You are not paying into your SSI fund
III. You are not paying UEID fund and will not be eligible for Unemployment benefits should you suddenly find yourself with no work.
IV. You’re not paying taxes.
V. You LOSE a serious tax deduction.

Now none of that may be all that important until you’re audited. However, when it comes to making a claim against AMS, PK Management, Asons, or any other Order Mill that carried and serviced the HUD contract, do I really need to spell it out??? If you have no payroll records because you don’t have employees because “YOU complete all the work”, well you have nothing to claim.
Here us how this works. If…in this case more like “when” the contract goes over $2000.00 DBA kicks in. Now the argument becomes, is the contract you sign with an order mill worth more than $2,000.00??? This becomes extremely important to you as a business owner paying Labor. Under the DBA Labor should be paid what is called “prevailing wage”,(PW).
Now PW is different for every skilled trade. In addition to the Federal guide lines for PW, most states have their own rules and laws governing PW. For example, the PW rates under the DBA  in California are higher than Nevada because of cost of living differences. Nevada PW laws in compliance with the DBA read in part,

Prevailing Wage Rates include the base rate as well as all applicable fringes.
NRS 338.010(21) “Wages” means:
(a) The basic hourly rate of pay; and
(b) The amount of pension, health and welfare, vacation and holiday pay, the cost of apprenticeship training or other similar programs or other bona fide fringe benefits which are a benefit to the workman.

NRS 338.035 Discharge of part of obligation of contractor or subcontractor engaged on public work to pay wages by making certain contributions in name of workman. The obligation of a contractor engaged on a public work or a subcontractor engaged on a public work to pay wages in accordance with the determination of the Labor Commissioner may be discharged in part by making contributions to a third person pursuant to a fund, plan or program in the name of the workman.
In accordance with AB 172:
The Labor Commissioner shall determine the prevailing wage to be 90 percent of the rate determined pursuant to paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) for:
(1) Any contract for a public work or any other construction, alteration, repair, remodeling or reconstruction of an improvement or property to which a school district or the Nevada System of Higher Education is a party; and
(2) A public work of, or constructed by, a school district or the Nevada System of Higher Education, or any other construction, alteration, repair, remodeling or reconstruction of an improvement or property of or constructed by a school district or the Nevada System of Higher Education.

That tells us what type of work under the DBA  will classified eligible for PW pay scale. But let’s get back to the issue. Your contract. Currently the argument in the ccout is

the contract in it’s entirety, taken as a whole is worth well over $2,000.00.

Of course the other side of the equation is each work order is a single contract, which is what the NAMFS. Offender Members are claiming. The rebuttal?????
It is the contract that was originally bid. In the original bid the order mill (what is called the awardee), should be bidding and allowing for the DBA in the cost if completing the job.

And as the Bard would say…There in lies the rub.
I have long stated if you want me to assist you in fulfilling your contractual obligations I need to be part of the negotiation process. While Mr. O’Neill has been vocal for Labor, unlike Mr. Douglas who has diversified and stopped assisting NAMFS financially, Mr. O’Neil continues to support the organization. And although he is a rational voice for labor in the PPI, I have to disagree with him on what he claims… this is a bid issue. It is far from a bid issue, as the wording states it’s a contract issue. Hope you keep good employment records. If you don’t already pay yourself, start. If you need assistance understanding how that works get a hold of me, it’s a pretty easy fix for your company. For more Information on the subject.

Can a company diversify in the PPI and make it selling the same services???

Well to answer that question a couple industry veterans. I caught up with both Bret Douglas if Ironclad Preservation and Matt Steffen.

Bret Douglas...Founder Ironclad Preservation Inc.
Bret Douglas…Founder Ironclad Preservation Inc.

Bret Douglas;
How are this g shaping up for Team Ironclad now that you no longer depend on PPI work as the majority of incoming revenues?
Bret: We are extremely happy that Team Ironclad took the liberty to diversify. If we had not started that process we would not have survived this year.

Sales and volumes in preservation work have plummeted. The inventory has all but dried up.
How grim were things?
Bret: We as a team were faced with losing our compound due to a two year construction delay. We finally have settled that issue and are pleased to be moving into a new much larger facility by Jan first. Our new address will have two warehouses side by side,7500 main and 3000 for the equipment. Almost 11,000 sqft for our three enterprises
You diversified into three departments?
Bret: We have split our firm into three sections.
Team ironclad is comprised of preservation, landscape management and FAST association.
Essentially providing PPI. Services to the public, so when will we hear about a new FAST event?
Bret: We are shooting for a February or March fast event as with the move we are unable to pull off a fall event
When I spoke with Matt, of course the conversation included a couple questions about the HIPR service NAMFS offender members were demanding be completed with unqualified personal and in an extremely dangerous manner. Many of you may remember Matt sent the service specs into OSHA, being this was for HUD, naturally OSHA asked if someone was crazy???
Matt was one of the first in the industry to diversify and seek private sector clients.
So how have things been since you diversified??
Matt: We diversified upon necessity. Their are virtually NO foreclosures here in Montana. 64 in the entire state last month to be exact. That said, we do provide the same services to the private sector
When you heard the news from Foreclosurepedia, what were your thoughts?
Matt: When Paul told me the news I was glad it finally came to light and people will now be held accountable.
Oh come on now there has to be a tiny little part of you jumping up and down…
Yes I’m ecstatic!!!
I know that last sentence is said in jest. Matt as myself Paul Williams and all the others that refused to complete this dangerous and in many places illegal practice of back-feeding electricity into a home, well truth is folks, those that refused got a black mark but we all acted in the best interests of our employees and our companies.
No amount of money is worth sacrificing your employees health nor your companies integrity.

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Until Next Time…
Happy Gardening

PPI Watch List …NFN FOLLOW UP

Organics Admin
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Organics Admin

COO at Aladay LLC
Organic Farmer, Property Preservation Specialist and Custom Glass & Wood Worker. Blogger extraordinaire...
Organics Admin
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Latest posts by Organics Admin (see all)

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series PPI Watch List
Victor Aldrey
Victor Aldrey

This past week I wrote about National Field Network (NFN), based on scuttlebutt and the hunch the company may be insolvent, placed them for a second time on the PPI Watch List. This was predicated by several inquiries from folks looking for avenues to collect monies owed to them. This week is a little different, no; NFN is not coming off the PPI Watch List. As a matter of fact if you are owed especially if you have received “Hush Up” payment on what you’re owed. Reports are coming in of people owed $27k and only after complaining did they receive $15k. NO NFN is definitely remaining on the PPI Watch List.

This is not a good sign. In addition I have received information from sources speaking on the condition of anonymity, that the internal C-Level employees at NFN have grave concerns their payroll is in peril. I’ll be nice…Here’s the reality, if C-Level employees have payroll concerns, you as a Contractor, should also have brave concerns about getting paid. When we developed the PPI Watch List no one had the debt that NFN is currently reported to have with Labor.

With rumors circulating in the FIVE Million Dollar range…whether true or not…and this is just me. I would be lining the ducks up and placing a lien on any services that have gone past the payment date in you contracts. The PPI Watch List was designed as a precursor to the obituary that is eventually written about companies when the file bankruptcy. Make no mistake folks that is the Road Shari Nott is going down.

This Morning I received an email from a source over on Face Book;

Aaron,

After I read your article last week I asked if this was the same company as the logo was the same. Here is their response and mine. I posted the question on the NFN Face Book page and I received this response a couple days later via a private message.


National Field Network is responding to your activity on the page

NAME REDACTED, If you are having issues with outstanding payment, please contact Maggie Sinanan at 732-276-5563 and we’ll make sure to address your concerns. If you do not receive a response within 24 hours, please ask to speak to the COO. Best regards, NFN

This was my response,

I’m not currently owed anything by your company…merely asking a question. You’re company is on the verge of insolvency for the second time within five years what type of upper management do you have??? You routinely ask people to work for free and have established a system for fraud throughout the industry…If your company is stand up then conduct and interview with Aladay LLC or Forclosurepedia. Sherri refuses to do so or allow anyone else to talk publicly. What are you hiding? Reports are your company is almost 5 million in the rears and people are being advised to place liens on Contractors are being advised to lien properties so they can collect what you owe. Did you receive a check last week? Contractors are not according to reports.

Interesting, so if you are owed money you know whom to contact at NFN, give Maggie a call she’ll get you squared away (QUACK!!!)…also that is a good question Shari Nott, why not do an interview? Perhaps Shari knows it would be futile and reminiscent of when Robert at SEAS was begging for more time to continue stealing from Labor.

PPI Watch List Honorary Inductee. EDNAMFS For knowingly Allows members to skirt business laws.
PPI Watch List Honorary Inductee. EDNAMFS For knowingly Allows members to skirt business laws.

Now this is not the first time NFN has had issues paying people. If memory serves me correctly the name Buczek comes to mind. One of the biggest issues in the PPI is that of payroll by members of the National Association of Mortgage Filed Services… Management For Stealing…and for whatever reasons this failed business model of being a second tier National Subbing Company, (NSC) continues to thrive. Obviously Eric Miller has to maintain some sort of membership to continue receiving his salary of one hundred twenty thousand plus dollars a year. This is a system that is strife with crime on a level that has made Eric Miller parallel to Crime Boss Tony Soprano. Difference being, Miller is actually conspiring, and by overseeing crime daily is an accessory to the fact, Tony was a character played by an actor.

This is far worse than CWIS who has been awarded $180.9 MILLION dollars in HUD contracts since 2004 and being ordered by HUD to pay the vendors they were paid on…Which brings me to this…

YOU GET PAID WHEN WE GET PAID

One of the most recent contracts I have reviewed is one out of Southern California with this clause. I was rather blown away when I discovered the contract belonged to NRES. Normally I would be sounding alarms when I read something like that in a contract. However, in this particular case the “man behind the curtain” if you will, has always been straight forward with Labor and while a bitch or two has come in over the past three years, nothing that would warrant entry into the PPI Watch List. No NRES has always been for the most part square with Labor. Keeping in mind, **it happens, you’re going to get a bitch in business now and then. Still the fact is that NRES has not cheated people or Labor so while I cannot endorse the contract because of certain language there is absolutely no reason to believe that NRES will not pay you when they get paid. Sono entry on the PPI Watch List, unlike NFN, CWIS, and the rest of the lot over at the Management For Stealing office.

Now I touched base with Brian Mingham over at NRES. Brian pointed out something that all the good Contractors have to suffer for. CRAPPY Craigs List hacks!!!! I informed Brian that I had received several inquiries to the contract and let him know I would have to write something. Unlike Shari Nott, Brian has no issue speaking in the media about industry issues that affect his company.

It is the contract. We pay people weekly, we reserve the right to pay when we get paid. If there is an issue, quality, construction, anything we reserve the right to pay. The issue is labor is never on the hook for doing it wrong, I’m getting charge backs so we have to work together to make sure the industry improves the quality, photos, description, do asset management and not a work order…

Now I have to say, and many of you are going to fall out of your chair reading this, however, I kinda have to side with management on this issue of shoddy workmanship. Brian went further stating,

We had to get a much stiffer contract after all the litigation that comes in from owners of PFC homes, clients pushing it down and labor not doing a good job. I know it is rough, our agreements are as bad and the charge backs kill us so all of good people pay for it. I’m not trying to screw anyone, any company, I’m trying to protect our brand, do the right thing, pay contractors but go after the bad ones and the only way to do it is with a contract that people acknowledge, sign and live with. I’m happy to connect any time and discuss.

The Scenario for the PPI Watch List

Now many of you know that for years I have screamed at that scenario and the fact that it an open ended scenario to create graft and theft, theft by deception if you will. However, in this particular case Mr. Mingham does not have a track record of not paying Labor, furthermore I do not believe for one split second that NRES is insolvent.

However, allow me to expand on something Mr. Mingham has brought up. Something that the National Order Mills refuse to address is the labor factor in the equation. As an employer I have the same issue finding quality employees to protect our brand and company reputation. Make no mistake folks I have no issue giving you up if you’re screwing the pooch. I have more than once reported vendors taking hazards to job sites to “pad” the invoice.

Williams Home Repair here in Reno operated for almost a year without a valid business license and when the owner told me about her Hazard Scam I followed her for a day or two until I could get some photos. Many of you know I’m no choir boy and I have a past. Said past has made me have to work ten times harder than most to develop a solid company reputation and brand. I’m not complaining here, just pointing out that because of the road I went down I must work harder than the next guy to prove myself. Now when you go and screw the pooch and damage all the hard work I have done and place my company in a bad light because we are in the same industry, well sorry but I give you up and hope you receive criminal charges and fines.

The message here is that Labor HAS to work with Management and Management with Labor. Unlike the belief that Eric Miller has, that labor is immaterial. The two co-exist because of each other. However, in this insane industry there is a factor that I will delve into in upcoming articles. The other side of Management. OH Say…Fannie Mae, HUD, Freddie Mac, Wells Fargo et al. These are the folks setting the pricing and telling everyone that we are government backed and you have to pay prevailing wage. As I said a story for another day.

I have long stated that if Management wishes me to assist with them honoring their negotiated contract that I/Labor needs to be part of the equation. Have any members of Labor been asked for input from the National Oder Mills when they were negotiating contracts? And therein, as the Bard would tell us, lies the rub. We all participate in an industry that the Too Big Too Fail gang dictates too.

bannerproofSome events are rapidly approaching, a FAST event in Ohio and the National Association of Mortgage Field Services Fraud Fest in Dallas. Perhaps it’s time folks on the West Coast shake of the California Dreamin’ attitude and come together and start some meaningful discussions on how to remedy the fact that the following has occurred in the past five years:

  1. Dump Fees have gone up,
  2. Hazard disposal fees have gone up
  3. Mimimum Wage has DOUBLED
  4. Fuel pricing is still unstable
  5. Insurance, licensing fees have both gone up (our license in 2007 was $75 now $150)

All of these cost of which Labor pays, as they are the cost of doing business. While I’m not sure how this will take place. One member of Management has stepped up to acknowledge that Management and Labor must work together to bring about positive solutions for change and in fact has opened the door.

Make no mistake folks, Property Preservation is an Industry, we call it the Property Preservation Industry. Isn’t it time we all sit down and start treating the PPI as such???

No Matter Where You Are...We'll be Watching
No Matter Where You Are…We’ll be Watching

 

Enjoy your Sunday Folks

Until Next Time

Happy Gardening

 

Written By: Aaron Aveiro

Photographs Courtesy Google Images and Bret Douglas

Opinions expressed do not reflect those of Aladay LLC Ownership