WMC Opposes Obama Overtime Rule

Government Mandated Wage Increases Will Kill Jobs, Stifle Growth

Madison – Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, the state’s chamber, today blasted a proposal from the U.S. Department of Labor to mandate more than $1 billion in overtime for businesses across the nation. WMC will oppose the new regulation.

The new rule would increase overtime payments by increasing the salary limits for workers who are exempt from overtime under current law. The new regulation is slated to start in December this year.

WMC Director of Health and Human Resources Policy Chris Reader said:

“The overtime rule is an aggressive intrusion of government into the payroll departments of businesses. Employers and their employees don’t need the Department of Labor setting wage and benefit packages for them. The Administration seems to think that they can simply decree that employers spend more on wages without any corresponding improvement in performance, but all they will accomplish is a waste of money on compliance and a shuffling of finite resources.

“The Obama Administration is saying they know better than actual employees and job creators. The result will be millions spent on compliance rather than going into job creation or higher salaries, lost hours and wages for workers, and a shift in employee benefit packages to make up for any increased cost in higher hourly wages.

“Wisconsin businesses call upon Congress to stop this overtime mandate.”

The rule doubles the salary threshold for employees exempt from overtime to $47,476 a year from $23,660, a level last updated in 2004. That means workers who earn annual salaries of less than $47,476 will be eligible for overtime pay, while eligibility for those with salaries of that much or more will depend on their job duties. Workers who are paid hourly are generally eligible for overtime no matter how much they make annually.

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