Good news coming down the pike for the millions of American workers who have been exempted from overtime pay. The New York Times reports that tomorrow, Thursday, March 13, President Obama will direct the federal Department of Labor to stop classifying a series of jobs as “professional” or “executive.” How will this affect you?
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As of the date of this writing, the Department of Labor exempts a seemingly long list of employees as exempt from receiving overtime pay. This list includes, but is not limited to:
- Executive, administrative, and professional employees (including teachers and academic administrative personnel in elementary and secondary schools);
- Outside sales employees, and certain skilled computer professionals (as defined in the Department of Labor’s regulations);
- Employees of certain seasonal amusement or recreational establishments;
- Employees of certain small newspapers;
- Certain commissioned employees of retail or service establishments;
- Railroad and air carrier employees;
- Announcers, news editors, and chief engineers of certain non?metropolitan broadcasting stations;
- Employees of motion picture theaters;
According to The New York Times, the president is planning on revamping the Department of Labor regulations to include some formerly expempt employees, including fast-food managers, loan officers, computer technicians, and others whom many businesses currently classify as “executive or professional” employees to avoid paying them overtime.
This comes on the heels of the president’s controversial proposal to raise the national minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.
An American president working around Congress to make changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA,) which governs overtime pay, is nothing new. George W. Bush used the same tactics to make the regulations more “business-friendly,” and increased flexibility for businesses to avoid paying workers for overtime hours. President Obama is attempting to reverse the income inequality that is plaguing the country and help more hard-working Americans thrive.
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Is this good news; should the president regulate that more workers have a right to overtime pay under the FLSA? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.