PPWO Notes Challenges Overtime Rule Is Having on Students, Schools and Others

The upcoming Labor Day weekend unofficially marks the end of summer and the start of another school year. This year as students, schools, and others make final back-to-school preparations, they also need to grapple with fewer resources and less flexibility as a result of the sudden and massive changes to the workplace caused by Department of Labor’s final overtime rule.

The Department of Labor’s May 18 rule increases the salary threshold under which most employees must be paid overtime from $23,660 to $47,476. A 100 percent increase on December 1st this year is too much, too fast. In order to ensure every employee is paid for every hour worked, the rule requires employers to adjust.  Employers will do so by possibly reclassifying millions of employees from salaried to hourly overnight. These employees will be on the clock and their employers will have to closely track and manage their hours leaving them with less autonomy and flexibility. These changes will also strain resources from school systems and higher education institutions that will be forced to reclassify a variety of non-teaching personnel such as school nurses, counselors, resident assistants, researchers and coaches.

“Millions of employers, including school systems, colleges and universities, have made it clear that the new overtime regulations will result in severe consequences when it goes into effect on December 1,” said Lisa Horn, Co-Chair of the Partnership to Protect Workplace Opportunity. Horn continued, “The clock is ticking for employers and employees, so we urge Congress to move quickly to provide much needed relief to the nation’s educational institutions, small businesses, nonprofits, and local governments—all of which have expressed concern over the damage such a rule would inflict.”

The PPWO applauds the bipartisan efforts underway in Congress to address the overtime rule. The Partnership continues to support the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act (S. 2707/H.R. 4773) and the Overtime Reform and Enhancement Act (H.R. 5813).