Judge Amos Mazzant, the judge who blocked enforcement of the Department of Labor’s new overtime rule, said many things that aren’t true in his opinion, including misstatements of historical fact such as when a minimum salary for exemption was first included in the regulations (it was right from the beginning, in 1938, not two years later).
The decision of a judge in Texas to block the Department of Labor’s new regulations guaranteeing overtime pay to millions of workers is more than just bad law. It is also a financial blow to people who had every reason to expect that their lives were about to be made a little easier.
Judge Amos Mazzant’s opinion to block the Department of Labor’s new overtime rule is poorly reasoned and factually inaccurate. Judge Mazzant does not know the history of the Fair Labor Standards Act and he appears not to understand Chevron deference, a rule constructed by the U.S. Supreme Court to guide judicial review of federal agency regulatory decisions.
This evening, a United States District Court in Texas issued an injunction against the Obama administration’s changes to the overtime rule, arguing the Labor Department does not have the authority it has exercised since 1938, under 10 presidents, including FDR and George W.
The Department of Labor’s new overtime rule, which takes effect on December 1, significantly increases the number of people who qualify for time-and-a-half pay for any hours they work beyond 40 in a week.
CBO released a report on the economic impact of repealing the Department of Labor’s new overtime rule, which raises the salary level for exemption from $23,660 a year to $47,476, thereby making about 4 million employees newly eligible for overtime pay and strengthening the right to overtime pay for about 8.5 million more.
The latest CBO analysis of the impending update to the overtime rule concludes that repealing the rule change would increase inequality, lower the incomes and increase the hours of almost a million workers, and do nothing to increase employment.
Labor mobility is fundamental to the ability to earn good wages. The improvement in incomes and living standards over the centuries is tied tightly to the growing ability of workers to quit the job they have and take another.
One of President Obama’s most important contributions to better pay and working conditions in the United States is his executive order on Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, which he issued two years ago and is finally taking effect this month.
The middle class is set to get a raise on December 1, when the updated overtime pay rule goes into effect—giving working people more free time, more money in their wallets, or both.
Today, the Chamber of Commerce and several states, including Texas, filed two different suits attempting to gut the Department of Labor’s updated overtime pay rules, which will restore a guarantee of overtime pay to more than 12 million salaried employees.
The final rule implementing President Obama’s executive order on fair pay and safe workplaces has been issued, along with guidance from the Department of Labor.
The Department of Labor has issued an update to its overtime rules that will bring an additional 12.5 million salaried employees under the exemption threshold, the level below which they are guaranteed overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours in a week, regardless of their job title or duties.
Rep. Kurt Schrader has introduced legislation (the Overtime Reform and Enhancement Act, or OREA) that would undermine the Department of Labor’s new rule that expands the overtime rights of salaried employees who earn less than $47,476 a year ($913 per week). The bill would harm the low- and middle-income Americans whom the Labor Department's rule is designed to help.
Gretchen Carlson is boldly fighting the latest technique employers are using to avoid justice, to get away with sex or race discrimination, and to escape lawsuits for wage theft—putting binding arbitration clauses in employment contracts, which keeps cases out of the state and federal courts and push them into private dispute resolution systems that systematically favor employers.
It’s internship season and offices across the country are filled with interns trying to make a good impression. Do internships lead to jobs?
Thank you for inviting me to testify today.
I am Ross Eisenbrey, the vice president of the Economic Policy Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank created in 1986 to include the needs of low- and middle-income workers in economic policy discussions.
Rep. Phil Roe claims that the new Department of Labor overtime rule will add $9 million in new costs for the University of Tennessee. This is less than half of 1 percent of the annual budget, yet Rep. Roe claims this will force a 2 percent tuition increase. That does not add up.
The priorities of our top universities, which routinely pay more than a million dollars to a football coach while starving the best-educated scientists in the world, are clearly wrong. They should be ashamed to be fighting a rule that will provide modest compensation for their employees’ long hours.
Business groups that oppose the new rule claim that salaried employees will lose important work schedule flexibility when they become eligible for overtime pay. But the evidence shows this fear is unfounded, and, in fact, salaried workers who earn less than $50,000 a year currently have barely more flexibility at work than hourly paid employees.
EPI counts everyone who is covered by the FLSA and earning a salary between the old threshold and the new one as benefitting from the new rule. This is because they will know—most of them for the first time—that they are entitled to overtime pay. Until now, many of those 12.5 million employees were denied overtime pay based on the duties tests and treated as exempt, even though they were not clearly or legitimately exempt. At the very least, all of these workers have now had their rights strengthened and clarified.
Raising the overtime salary threshold to $47,476 means 6.5 million millennials, or 4.5 million more than were covered, will directly benefit, with most of them gaining new rights to overtime eligibility.
The Department of Labor’s new overtime rule significantly increases the number of people who qualify for time-and-a-half pay for any hours they work beyond 40 in a week.
By restoring and strengthening working people’s right to overtime pay, the Department of Labor is protecting millions of Americans from overwork, and making sure they get paid their fair share when they do work more than 40 hours in a week.
These tables give a detailed breakdown of who is included in the estimated 12.5 million salaried workers who will directly benefit from the Department of Labor’s new rule raising the salary threshold below which salaried workers are automatically eligible for overtime pay.
Tomorrow, the Vice President is expected to announce the U.S. Department of Labor’s issuance of the final rule on overtime for salaried employees.
Thank you for inviting me to testify today.
My name is Ross Eisenbrey, and I am the vice president of the Economic Policy Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank created in 1986 to include the needs of low- and middle-income workers in economic policy discussions.
Postdoctoral researchers (postdocs) are highly educated researchers who have completed rigorous Ph.D. programs, but they are often paid low wages and work long hours. The good news is that the Department of Labor’s restored overtime rule would guarantee anyone earning up to $50,000 the right to earn overtime pay—including postdocs, who will likely get a raise to put them above the new salary threshold or start receiving overtime pay.
The White House released a report this morning that illuminates another part of the complex problem of stagnating wages—the rise of non-compete agreements and their spread to low-wage employment.