LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- One Louisville company was ahead of the curve, or better yet, ahead of the curb.
Five weeks ago, Louisville Paving and Construction started mandatory testing for COVID-19, well before President Joe Biden ordered new federal vaccine requirements, which required all employers with more than 100 workers to require vaccination from COVID-19 or test for the virus weekly.
"I felt like we were a little bit ahead of the curve," Kurt Krug, senior vice president of Louisville Paving and Construction, said.
If office workers aren't vaccinated, they get tested each week. Dozens of employees get swabbed every Tuesday at a cost of $100 per person.
"It adds up pretty quickly, but again we feel it is the right thing to do, it protects folks," Krug said. "It sends the right message to them that we are looking out for them and their best interests, so it's an investment in our people."
The company offers COVID-19 tests and antibody testing.
"It's very convenient," Kristi Travelstead, director of Human Resources for Louisville Paving and Construction, said.
Thus far, out of about 300 tests, just three tests have returned positive. Employees wouldn't have known as they were all asymptomatic.
The testing isn't just intended to monitor unvaccinated employees, as many vaccinated workers still get the free testing as well.
Louisville Paving and Construction expects to have about an 80% vaccination rate by the end of September. The company doesn't want to single out employees, so everyone is asked to wear a mask while inside buildings in an effort to promote teamwork.
The company gave out a cash prize in a special contest for vaccinated employees. The contest was held on Zoom as employees watched.
"It looked like Wheel of Fortune and we picked a name and we had a happy winner who was actually out in our field service, so he walked away with $5,000," Krug said.
Louisville Paving and Construction could be forced to address another portion of its workers if mandates call for outdoor workers involved in federal projects be vaccinated.
"It can open up another can of worms and we've got a lot of people who are resistant for a whole host of reasons and we don't criticize people for making their personal choice because that is in fact what it is," Krug said.
For now, the company finds itself further down the road than most companies in the battle against COVID-19.
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