Reps. Virginia Foxx and Kevin Kiley have submitted a comment letter to acting Department of Labor Secretary Julie Su to urge the department to withdraw a proposed overtime rule, calling it harmful and saying it will harm workers, small businesses, nonprofits, colleges, and universities.
“This proposed rule would have a devastating impact on America’s small businesses, nonprofits, colleges, universities, and other employers who have fought so hard to recover from President Biden’s failed economic policies,” write Foxx, R-N.C., who chairs the House Education and the Workforce Committee, and Kiley, R-Calif., the chairman of the Workforce Protections Subcommittee.
The new rule, introduced in August, would make 3.6 million more U.S. workers eligible for overtime pay and would revive an Obama-era policy effort that was ultimately thrown out in court.
Several other GOP lawmakers also signed onto the letter, including Glenn “GT” Thompson, Pennsylvania; Tim Walberg, Michigan: Elise Stefanik, New York; Rick Allen, Georgia; James Comer, Kentucky; Lloyd Smucker, Pennsylvania; Burgess Owens, Utah; Bob Good, Virginia; Mary Miller, Illinois: Michelle Steel, California; Julia Letlow, Louisiana; Aaron Bean, Florida; Eric Burlison, Missouri, and Erin Houchin, Indiana.
“DOL under President Trump published a rule that responsibly updated the salary threshold and considered extensive stakeholder feedback before issuing the final rule,” the letter states. “The same cannot be said about the rushed efforts of the current DOL to push through a rule which makes changes as extreme as they are unnecessary.”
They further called the new overtime salary threshold, coming less than four years after a prior increase, “premature and unnecessary,” in large part due to the “administration’s radical policies, small employers have faced persistent inflation and higher operating costs.”
They added that it is not the right time to “add to the still-increasing costs of labor, compliance, payroll and administration,” and insisted that the DOL “needs to withdraw this harmful rule.”
Meanwhile, the department has refused to extend the comment period beyond an initial 60-day window, closing on Tuesday, which the opponents do not believe is a “reasonable and meaningful” window of time.
Overtime regulations last revised by the DOL in September, 2019, during the Trump administration, took the salary threshold for exempt employees from $455 per week, or $23,660 annually, to the current standard of $684 per week, or $35,568 annually.
The “rushed efforts” under the Biden administration though, “makes changes as extreme as they are unnecessary,” raising the salary threshold for employees by about 55% to $1,059 per week, or $55,068 annually.
“The proposed rule will increase compliance challenges for employers, force businesses to scale back hours for many nonexempt employees, and reclassify employees or undergo significant layoffs in order to comply,” the lawmakers’ letter said. “Small employers who are already dealing with high inflation, a higher cost of labor, and other challenges stand to be hit hard by this rule.”
Sandy Fitzgerald | [email protected]
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
Read the full article here