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DOL’s Overtime Rule Targeted by Senate Republicans

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    DOL’s Overtime Rule Targeted by Senate Republicans

    On June 7, 2016, Republican senators introduced a resolution of disapproval (S J Res 34) aimed at stopping U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime rule. The measure, introduced by Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), has support from more than 40 other Senate Republicans, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). Specifically, if the resolution is passed, the overtime rule would be void, meaning that DOL would be barred from writing a similar rule without congressional approval. Click here to see if your senator has cosponsored S J. Res 34.

    On May 18, DOL released the new rule which amends regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that determine which employees are eligible for overtime pay, and nearly doubles the maximum salary for eligibility from $23,660 to $47,476. The rule will take effect on December 1, 2016 and applies to executive, administrative and professional employees – collectively referred to under FLSA as “white collar” workers.

    The new rule has been highly debated, receiving both strong support and opposition. Democrats and labor unions support the rule, arguing it ensures fair wages for workers. However, Republicans, small businesses, non-profits and education institutions have strongly opposed it, arguing that the increased costs of the rule for employers will ultimately hurt their employees.

    Introducing the resolution is the first step in halting the overtime rule. The resolution would have to be passed by both chambers and signed by the president in order to take effect. However, the White House has threatened to veto any measures that would stop the rule.  Republicans in both chambers of Congress have said they would consider using the appropriations process to prohibit the use of funds to implement the overtime rule.

    When the proposed rule was first released last year, the National Association of Counties (NACo) expressed concerns over potential fiscal and administrative impact on county governments. Comments were submitted to DOL requesting an extension of the comment period to give counties more time to calculate the potential administrative and financial burdens of the proposed rule, and also requested that DOL conduct additional analysis on the impact on local governments. In addition, NACo led a delegation of local government officials to meet with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to outline concerns with the proposed rule.

    County governments are a major employer and economic engine for workers across the U.S. Today, America’s 3,069 county governments employ more than 3.6 million people, providing services to over 308 million county residents. The new salary threshold will have potential impacts on county governments, especially those in rural areas. County governments may experience significant unintended consequences due to the new rule, which DOL developed without consulting local government partners.

    NACo will continue to monitory any legislation that would impact DOL’s final rule.

    Resources:

    • NACo’s Comments on DOL’s Proposed Rule on Overtime Pay
    On June 7, 2016, Republican senators introduced a resolution of disapproval (S J Res 34) aimed at stopping U.S.
    2016-06-15
    Blog
    2016-06-21

On June 7, 2016, Republican senators introduced a resolution of disapproval (S J Res 34) aimed at stopping U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime rule. The measure, introduced by Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), has support from more than 40 other Senate Republicans, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). Specifically, if the resolution is passed, the overtime rule would be void, meaning that DOL would be barred from writing a similar rule without congressional approval. Click here to see if your senator has cosponsored S J. Res 34.

On May 18, DOL released the new rule which amends regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that determine which employees are eligible for overtime pay, and nearly doubles the maximum salary for eligibility from $23,660 to $47,476. The rule will take effect on December 1, 2016 and applies to executive, administrative and professional employees – collectively referred to under FLSA as “white collar” workers.

The new rule has been highly debated, receiving both strong support and opposition. Democrats and labor unions support the rule, arguing it ensures fair wages for workers. However, Republicans, small businesses, non-profits and education institutions have strongly opposed it, arguing that the increased costs of the rule for employers will ultimately hurt their employees.

Introducing the resolution is the first step in halting the overtime rule. The resolution would have to be passed by both chambers and signed by the president in order to take effect. However, the White House has threatened to veto any measures that would stop the rule.  Republicans in both chambers of Congress have said they would consider using the appropriations process to prohibit the use of funds to implement the overtime rule.

When the proposed rule was first released last year, the National Association of Counties (NACo) expressed concerns over potential fiscal and administrative impact on county governments. Comments were submitted to DOL requesting an extension of the comment period to give counties more time to calculate the potential administrative and financial burdens of the proposed rule, and also requested that DOL conduct additional analysis on the impact on local governments. In addition, NACo led a delegation of local government officials to meet with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to outline concerns with the proposed rule.

County governments are a major employer and economic engine for workers across the U.S. Today, America’s 3,069 county governments employ more than 3.6 million people, providing services to over 308 million county residents. The new salary threshold will have potential impacts on county governments, especially those in rural areas. County governments may experience significant unintended consequences due to the new rule, which DOL developed without consulting local government partners.

NACo will continue to monitory any legislation that would impact DOL’s final rule.

Resources:

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