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Jenni Muns

Policy Associate, National Council for Behavioral Health

Department of Labor Proposes to Extend Overtime Pay to Currently Exempt Workers

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The Department of Labor (DOL) has proposed extending its overtime pay exemption rules to include employees making up to $50,440 next year, a change that could affect up to 5 million workers. Under the new proposal, the salary threshold for overtime pay would rise to $970 per week ($50,440 per year) in 2016. The current level of $455 per week ($23,660) was established in 2004, and it is below the poverty line for a family of four.

Unlike the current exemption threshold, the newly proposed threshold is linked not to a specific salary amount, but to the 40th percentile of wage earners. Thus, the new salary threshold will automatically update over time. The proposed regulation affects white collar workers (executive, administrative and professional). More information is available in this fact sheet.

The DOL has posted the proposal online, giving people the opportunity to submit written comments on or before September 4, 2015. The White House has stated that the DOL will release a final rule next year after reviewing and considering these comments.

In addition, The National Council will be developing comments on the new rule and is interested in hearing from members. If you have thoughts or feedback on how the proposed rule will affect your organization, please send them to Rebecca Farley at rebeccaf@thenationalcouncil.org.