In the first six months of this year, New York State recovered and distributed more than $16.4 million in wages, interest and damages to about 21,000 workers who were underpaid wages and benefits, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's office said this week.

Long Island accounted for more than $1.7 million of the total recovered from employers, the state Labor Department said.

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"This administration will not tolerate those who seek to withhold what their workers are owed," Cuomo said.

Total disbursements were up 16 percent from the amount recovered in the first six months of 2013, and 35 percent above the same period in 2012. The latest recoveries resulted from nearly 5,000 Labor Department investigations from January to June, a 45 percent jump from the same period in 2013.

The department also collected nearly $850,000 in penalties from employers.