Chamber Meets with DOL Secretary Tom Perez

In March, President Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum directing the Department of Labor to “update and modernize” the overtime regulations. This memo is aimed at revising the regulations regarding exemptions and who qualifies for overtime pay (More Details).  Although, no specific amount to raise the weekly pay threshold has been announced, Maryland Chamber President and CEO Kathy Snyder, Vice President of Government Affairs Deriece Pate Bennett, and members of the Employment Issues Committee met with Department of Labor Secretary Tom Perez and members of his staff today, to discuss the President’s memorandum.

During the meeting members raised several concerns about how any changes to the overtime regulations may be problematic. The members specifically cited issues with defining who is exempted from overtime under the administrative exemption definitions and the potential impact an increase to the weekly pay threshold would have on businesses, specifically small businesses. Business owners and human resources managers are often faced with the task of determining whether or not an individual should be classified as an exempt or non-exempt employee, based on the federal regulations’ examples that do not explicitly relate to one’s industry and/or business model.

Our goal was to open the lines of communications between the DOL and the Maryland Chamber about the exemption definitions and express upon the fact that many businesses, especially in Maryland, are still recovering from the recession and dealing with a series of additional business costs due to Affordable Care Act, increases in the minimum wage, stormwater fees and a myriad of state and federal fees and regulations that would negatively impact the cost of doing business; therefore, regulators and officials should look multilaterally when discussing regulations such as this because the true cost of these changes do not affect business unilaterally.

We will continue to work with the Department to further address the concerns our members as it relates to the proposed changes in the overtime regulations and their exemption definitions and encourage you to send us ideas, thoughts and comments that you would like to see addressed. If you have specific examples, please contact Deriece Pate Bennett at dpatebennett@mdchamber.org.

Craig Ballew of Ferguson, Schetelich & Ballew, P.A. , Chamber President/CEO Kathy Snyder, U.S. Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, Ron Adler of Laurdan Associates, Inc., Chamber Vice President of Government Affairs Deriece Pate Bennett and Greta Engle of Kelly and Associates Insurance Group. 

Legislative Issues Tag: Employment Issues

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