State College based building contractor, Glenn O. Hawbaker Inc., will pay nearly $21 million in restitution after entering pleas of Nolo Contendere to four counts of theft in Centre County Court
The Attorney General’s office charged the company with stealing retirement earnings earmarked for prevailing wage employees and instead distributed that money into the retirement accounts for all company workers, including management.
In court, an attorney for the AG’s office said there were at least 250 victims who lost retirement fund money.
The court also ordered the appointment of a corporate oversight officer who will be monitoring the company for the next five years.
The presiding judge declined to assess a separate fine against the company besides the restitution and court costs.
A Nolo Contendere plea means the defendant accepts the conviction as if it was a guilty plea but does not admit guilt.
In court, Hawbaker Vice President Michael Hawbaker, said the company has cooperated with the Attorney General’s office and in 2019, began making changes in how fringe benefits are calculated.
One former Hawbaker employee, who did not want to be identified, said of the sentencing: “It’s not fair. This is a slap on the wrist for them. It’s a sad day for the working man.”