In a move that should surprise precisely no onecapitol-hill-building who has been paying attention to current U.S. politics, GOP lawmakers in the U.S. House and Senate introduced legislation to block the U.S. DOL’s anticipated overtime exemption rules, just two days after the DOL sent the final rule to the Office of Management and Budget. OMB review is typically the final stage before publication of a new rule.

The legislation, dubbed the “Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act,” would:

  • Void the DOL’s new rules;
  • Allow the DOL to publish updated rules only after conducting a detailed analysis of the rules’ impact on small business, non-profit and public employers;
  • Bar the DOL from adopting rules that provide for automatic adjustments of the minimum salary level without going through a formal notice and comment rulemaking process;
  • Require any proposed changes to the “duties” tests for the overtime exemptions to be published and subject to public notice and comment.


Continue Reading DOL OT Exemption Rules DOA? Federal Wage Theft Legislation? Probably Not …

In the run-up to the holidays, Congress rushed a Continuing Resolution (CR) to President Obama’s desk entitled the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015. The omnibus spending bill, nicknamed “CRomnibus,” avoided another government shutdown and funded most federal agencies (save for the Department of Homeland Security) through the federal government’s 2015

iStock_WageIncrease.XSmall.jpgBack in February, we told you about President Obama’s Executive Order 13658 increasing the minimum wage for federal contractor employees. Late last week, the Department of Labor’s Wage & Hour Division (WHD) submitted its Final Rule implementing EO 13658 to the White House Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). 

Obama.jpgRecently, we told you about President Obama’s Executive Order increasing the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors to $10.10 per hour. Tomorrow, President Obama is expected to announce that he will sign two new executive orders that will apply to federal contractors: (1) one order will forbid retaliation by federal contractors against employees that discuss their compensation with other employees; and (2) the other order will require federal contractors to maintain certain records on compensation organized by race and gender, and report that data to the federal government. These Orders are being issued to further advance the Administration’s cause of equal pay for women.

Approximately 25% of the U.S. workforce engages in federal contracting at least in part, including large, well-known businesses like Northrop Grumman and Boeing and a host of smaller manufacturers, suppliers, and service companies. Unlike the recent minimum wage order, which applied only to new and certain renewed contracts because of the change in compensation rates, these orders could be implemented immediately and apply to all contractors, making these orders’ potential impact much wider.


Continue Reading Obama Administration Expected to Expand Wage and Hour Protections, Disclosures for Federal Contractors’ Employees

In an unexpected move, the Obama administration officially announced today that it will issue a Presidential Memorandum to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) instructing its Secretary to update regulations regarding overtime protection for workers under the FLSA. Any changes to the regulation would be the first since 2004, when the Bush administration increased the