On March 17, lawmakers in the House and Senate introduced the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act (H.R. 4773, S. 2707), which seeks to prevent the currently-pending Department of Labor (DOL) Overtime Exemption Rule from taking effect, and setting forth additional criteria that must be complied with for any new regulatory action in this area. The lead sponsors of this bill are Representatives Tim Walberg (R-MI) and John Kline (R-MN), and Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Tim Scott (R-SC). Specifically, the legislation seeks to:
- Prevent the department from finalizing the rule as written;
- Require the department to fully and accurately consider the economic impact of any rule on small businesses, nonprofits, institutions of higher education, and others who will be affected;
- Ensure future changes to the salary threshold accurately reflect the economic realities facing workers and employers by making clear automatic increases are not allowed under current law; and
- Require any changes to the duties tests be made available for public review and comment.
In our comments on the rule, ANCOR agreed with several points in this proposed legislation, specifically in arguing that changes to the duties test should be open for public comment, and that geographic disparities be taken into account. Additionally, we are working through our S.O.S. Campaign on separate legislation that includes a requirement to accurately consider the economic impact on the Medicaid program prior to enacting a rule that will have a significant impact. At this time, ANCOR has not taken a position on the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act, but will continue to monitor it and reach out to Congressional offices to engage on issues that impact providers.