Dept. of Labor Investigates Capital Bikeshare Unfair Wages - NBC4 Washington

Dept. of Labor Investigates Capital Bikeshare Unfair Wages



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    A rack of Capital Bikeshare bicycles at the Eastern Market Metro station.

    The Department of Labor has opened up an investigation into unfair wages by Capital Bikeshare, a company one former worker says grossly underpaid him.

    News4's transportation reporter spoke with Anibal Apunte said his contract with Capital Bikeshare wasn't honored.

    "There are specific wages in those contracts they are supposed to pay us - the drivers, mechanics, bike checkers, technicians - and they haven't done that," Apunte said.

    Apunte, now a former employee, is leading the charge to bring wages and benefits for some on the Capital Bikeshare payroll up to par.

    "Some of the drivers started at $12 or $13 and they are actually supposed to be getting paid $17, $18 to start," Apunte told News4. "Some of the bike checkers... they're owed over $12,000. That's individually."

    Alta Bicycle Share in Portland, Ore. owns Capital Bikeshare in the D.C. area as well as several other programs the U.S. and the world, including New York, the Bay Area and Melbourne.

    "We fully value our work force and are doing everything we can to ensure that we are in compliance," a statement from Alta read. "We are providing all requested information, while continuing to operate a world-class bike share system."

    Eighteen Capital Bikeshare employees and former workers sent a letter to Alta president Mia Birk, calling for a repayment of their alleged unpaid wages.

    The D.C.  Department of Transportation also says it's aware of the complaints surrounding the bikeshare.

    The Capital Bikeshare program debuted in September 2010.