Man fired from MCLB construction job
A man hired to do construction work at the Marine Corps Logistics Base was fired after he discovered some of the parts they were using were made, not in America, but in China.
Bruce Earnest was hired by FRS Mechanical to work on the new barracks being built at MCLB Albany. He had been on the job for six days when he noticed a piece of equipment they were using said it was made in China, not America. Earnest then told the project inspector, who in turn, went to Earnest's boss. His boss told him not to install anymore and that's when Earnest admitted he was the one who made the discovery.
Earnest was fired that afternoon for what his boss called "non production".
"And he had said nothing to me the prior six days of work about my production at all. And he had no complaints until he found out I was the one reported the fittings being made in China," Said Earnest.
Earnest says he thinks his contractor is using the Chinese parts so he could get the job on a lower bid.
Lt. Kyle Thomas, spokesperson for the Marine Base said the new barracks is not a stimulus project. If that were the case, then all the materials used would have to be American made. The project is actually a "Buy American Act" project, in which case, only 51% of the materials have to be American made. Thomas said this piece was likely one of the 49%.
Lt. Thomas also said in some cases it's ok to buy materials from overseas, as long as they are assembled in the U.S.
We tried to contact the Navy Facilities Engineering Command for a statement about the circumstances surrounding Earnest's termination, but they were not immediately available for comment.