Long Beach HUD project workers waiting to be paid

LONG BEACH, MS (WLOX) - Since 2010, I have received several complaints concerning Great American Rebuilders out of Folsom, Louisiana. Workers say their checks have bounced.

Great American was hired as a sub-contractor at the Mariners Village, HUD Project.

"Everything went great with them for a while," Roy Davis said. "Roughly the last four checks that I received from them bounced. Of course, they took care of three of em, but it took a period of time."

Davis said he's been a carpenter for 18 years.

"I've tried to call the owner, Steve. Tried to call the office, they won't take my calls. They won't even give me a response. It's like they don't care. I don't know. I don't know which way to turn, you know. That's why I called you.

This is the second time that WLOX has met with unpaid workers involving Great American Rebuilders on this project. In December, more then 20 workers said they were owed money by Great American Rebuilders. After the story ran, the workers got paid.

Now another group is asking to be paid.

"It's upsetting to know that some of these guys that work for them have put them in a bind, a financial bind," Davis added.

Jeremy Baker said he worked for Great American Rebuilders for six months.

"I can't afford to pay my rent on anything," Baker said. "Jobs are pretty hard to come by here, so I tried my best to keep this one. But you can't stay somewhere where you don't get paid."

Baker and two other workers showed me these receipts they were given when they tried to cash their checks. On the receipt it says, "We cannot cash this check. Our decision was based on information by Certergy Check Services."

"They would give us a check and if we didn't take it straight to the bank and cash it, it wouldn't be any good by Monday," Baker said. "And after that they quit paying altogether."

Baker said the owners of Great American Rebuilders won't answer phone calls. He said one of the owners, Steve McMahan, texted him with this message.

"They say that they're bankrupt and don't have any money. They don't know where I expect them to get the money right now and they're working on a solution."

I contacted McMahan, who returned my phone call. He told me that the general contractor basically told Great American Rebuilders to leave the jobsite.

"Great American Rebuilders cannot pay the workers all their money at this time, but we are doing all we can in an effort to give them their final paychecks," McMahan said.

McMahan said he couldn't give a timetable on paying the workers.

United States Bankruptcy Court Easter District of Louisiana shows that Steve McMahan and his wife have filed for Bankruptcy. McMahan said the general contractor on the Mariners Village work site, Current Builders, has paid some of the workers that his company has been unable to pay.

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