On February 10-11, 2016, Contractors State License Board (CSLB) Investigators conducted three undercover stings in Southern California in which 44 people were cited for contracting without a license.
The undercover operations were held in Santa Maria, and in the La Canada Flintridge and Mount Washington communities in the greater Los Angeles area.
"Forty-four people in two days. That gives you an idea of the scope of this battle to get people to comply with the law," said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. "Even with all of the publicity about undercover stings, these workers still fail to become licensed and place bids with unsuspecting consumers."
In Santa Maria, investigators set up shop at a home in need of granite counters, tile work, painting and a hot water heater installation. They busted 13 people the first day of their operation and eight on the second day. They used online advertising sites to contact suspected illegal contractors and invited them to place bids on the home improvement projects.
The same scenario played out at two locations in the greater Los Angeles area where 23 people were cited for contracting without a license.
"Property owners put themselves at risk when they hire illegal contractors," said Barcelona. "None of these people have undergone background checks or passed the tests given by the state. In addition, these illegal contractors come in and undercut those legal contractors who follow the letter of the law."