Labor record of Catsimatidis' ventures starts to draw scrutiny

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Surrounded by supporters, John Catsimatidis talks to the

Surrounded by supporters, John Catsimatidis talks to the media during a news conference on the steps of City Hall in Manhattan last month. (Jan. 29, 2013) Photo Credit: AP

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With John Catsimatidis now in the GOP primary race for mayor, the employment practices of his supermarket empire, documented sporadically before in the news media, have begun to attract new attention.

Back when Eliot Spitzer was the state’s attorney general, delivery workers at Gristedes were the subject of a $2.6 million back-pay and damages settlement. Also, as recounted this week by Richard Steier in the Chief-Leader, a city-based civil service weekly:

“… In 2008 U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty found that Gristedes had failed to pay required overtime to more than 400 low-level managers, improperly claiming that they were salaried executives who were ineligible for additional pay. One reason Judge Crotty rejected the chain’s claim on this issue was that Gristedes had deducted money from these managers’ checks if they missed part of a day, the kind of thing normally done only to hourly workers.”

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A $3.5 million settlement had been reached -- the results of which Catsimatidis is still resisting in court, as noted in the Chief and in this story in the NY Post.

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