Overtime Rule Delayed Indefinitely

By Oliver Spurgeon III | Posted on November 29, 2016

2016 November overtime 410
Tags: Advocacy

Last week while many Americans were heading home for the holidays and thawing out turkeys, a federal judge in Texas issued a temporary injunction against the Obama administration’s looming overtime rule. In short, this means that employers across the country, including park and recreation agencies, will no longer be responsible for complying with the overtime rule. Many park and recreation agencies have been shifting schedules, awarding comp time, or adjusting salaries in order to prepare for the pending rule, which would have roughly doubled the salary cap for employees eligible for overtime pay, and was slated to go into effect on Thursday. It would have affected roughly 4 million workers, and required employers to pay them time-and-a-half for any time worked over 40 hours a week. 

This injunction, which will surely be met with legal appeals and additional petitions, is meant to give the court more time to weigh the merits of the pending lawsuit on behalf of numerous attorneys general. In effect, this indefinite delay means the overtime rule will be overturned once the Trump administration takes office on January 20, 2017. As we have mentioned in previous blog posts and webinars, President-elect Trump has highlighted the overtime rule as an onerous and burdensome regulation for businesses. Specifically, he said “rolling back the overtime regulation is just one example of the many regulations that need to be addressed to do that. We would love to see a delay or carve-out of sorts for our small business owners.” 

While this injunction represents a timely resolution for many agencies struggling to absorb higher costs, shift hours, or award comp time, some agencies have expressed a desire to continue operating as if the overtime rule goes into effect on Thursday. This is primarily the result of months of planning and budgeting for higher employee wages, and is seen as a way to increase pay and the quality of life for many employees.

The NRPA Public Policy team is curious to know whether this represents good news, bad news, or no news for your agency. Feel free to reach out and let us know how your agency is dealing with the recently halted overtime rule. Your input will be critical as workforce issues take center stage in the Trump administration.

Oliver Spurgeon III is NRPA’s Manager of Government Affairs.