PA Chamber Comments on Troubling DOL Overtime Proposal
Alex Halper, Vice President of Government Affairs at the Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry recently submitted a letter to the editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer commenting on the proposed changes by the Department of Labor in overtime calculations.
See Alex's letter and information on the proposed changes below.
A recent article seems intended to endorse a federal proposal to significantly expand eligibility for overtime pay (i.e., the requirement for employers to pay time-and-a-half for hours worked beyond 40 in a week) for employees in executive, administrative, and professional positions.
However, the article misses several key factors for both employers and employees. Many employers would not be able to sustain current operations by simply adding overtime to their labor costs. Think about government-funded nonprofits whose revenue wouldn’t keep pace with new costs and would have to cut back on services.
Colleges have also previously raised concerns with similarly expansive overtime eligibility proposals, fearing the impact on sports programs with assistant coaches who may work long hours during the sports season but enjoy flexibility during the offseason. These types of employment arrangements would essentially be prohibited under this proposed framework. The fact is, the federal proposal would force employers to shift salaried employees into hourly positions, in which hours can be tracked and capped at 40 per week. For many employees who have earned salary status — and the benefits and flexibility that come along with it — transitioning back to hourly work may feel like a demotion.
Alex Halper, vice president of government affairs, Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry, Harrisburg