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  • Last modified 237 days ago (Dec. 1, 2016)

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Employers get overtime reprieve

Staff writer

Despite many employers giving thought to what they will do with changes in federal overtime regulations, changes have been stopped — at least for now.

Under the new Department of Labor regulations, set to go into effect Thursday, the minimum salary threshold for employees to be exempt from getting overtime pay would have risen from $23,660 to $47,892.

In September, 21 states filed a motion in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas seeking an emergency injunction against the ruling.

Last week Judge Amos L. Mazzant of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas ruled the new regulations

Mazzant wrote that DOL exceeded the authority given to it “and ignores Congress’s intent by raising the minimum salary level such that it supplants the duties test. … Consequently, the Final Rule … is unlawful.”

Hillsboro city administrator Larry Paine said the rule would not have had any effect on the city.

“It has no impact on us because we have nobody who fits in that category,” Paine said. “Structurally our pay plan was in a state where that rule would not have applied to us at all.”

Marion city administrator Roger Holter said the city will issue a memo council members decided upon before knowing the rule would be struck down.

“We’ve elected to go ahead with the memo just because it can serve to eliminate any confusion and give the employees the opportunity to ask questions, express concerns and gain better alliance with the direction and vision of the city,” Holter said.

The council also decided to change the way employee hours are kept.

“We trust our department heads to lead roughly million dollar operations, but by policy it appeared we may have lacked trust in their ability to manage their time and work schedules,” Holter said.

Holter said although the previously-announced rule caused the city to re-evaluate how it deals with employees, that is probably a good thing.

“It’s never fun to work through a situation and then in the 11th hour all bets are off, but at the same time, it’s forced 100,000s of employers to re-examine how they manage their greatest asset — the folks they have the privilege to work with and do life together with,” Holter said.

County commissioner Randy Dallke said although commissioners have discussed the matter, no decisions had yet been made.

Last modified Dec. 1, 2016

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