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$781,000 suit settled with Huntington tree-trimming firm

Trucks with the Looks Great Services logo are

Trucks with the Looks Great Services logo are parked in a lot in Huntington on April 1, 2013. Credit: Ed Betz

The Town of Huntington has agreed to pay $781,000 to settle a lawsuit with Looks Great Services Inc., a Huntington-based tree-trimming firm, which sued the town over withheld payments for work done in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy.

In July 2013, Looks Great filed a suit in Supreme Court  in Nassau against Huntington and other agencies and municipalities for overdue payments.

Previously, the town had paid Looks Great $6,764,334. Town spokesman A.J. Carter said the town withheld the payments because of an investigation by the Suffolk County district attorney's office over prevailing wages.

"They were owed the money," Carter said. "The town has settled the lawsuit."

The settlement was approved 5-0 at last month's town board meeting. Carter said town officials expect the Federal Emergency Management Agency to reimburse the money.

In June, Looks Great pleaded guilty in a Suffolk County Court to underpaying workers in violation of prevailing-wage laws. In all, 53 workers were to share more than $260,000 in unpaid wages as part of an agreement worked out with prosecutors.

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