For Immediate Release
May 27, 2020
HARRISBURG - Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry President Gene Barr issued the following statement after the Senate adopted House Concurrent Regulatory Review Resolution 1, disapproving the state Department of Labor and Industry’s proposal to significantly expand overtime eligibility standards.
“We thank House and Senate lawmakers for adopting this resolution, given the concerns that the Pennsylvania Chamber and a large and diverse coalition have raised for several years and are only exacerbated by the current healthcare and economic emergency. Many employers unable to absorb additional labor costs will be forced to shift salaried employees into hourly positions so that hours can be tracked and capped in order to avoid overtime costs. Employees may technically be eligible for overtime pay, yet they lose the flexibility and predictability that comes with earning a salary with no guarantee of additional wages.”
“Additional employer concerns were prompted by other aspects of the Department’s rule, including falling short of its stated goal of addressing complicated inconsistencies with federal law and its proposal to automatically grow overtime eligibility in the coming years with larger and larger expansions.”
“This proposal has been controversial since a version was first proposed by former President Obama and ultimately struck down by a Federal Judge he had nominated a few years earlier. Reasonable people can disagree on this proposal; and while we don’t question the positive intentions behind it, we hope supporters recognize that it cannot be considered in a vacuum. Many employers most adversely impacted, including nonprofit organizations, higher education, restaurants and others, are also among those who have been hit hardest by the pandemic and economic fallout. Imposing additional costs and removing workplace flexibility will harm employers who are already struggling, adding another obstacle on Pennsylvania’s path to economic recovery."
"We thank the General Assembly for passing this resolution, and we urge Governor Wolf to allow it to take effect.”
The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry is the state's largest broad-based business association, with its statewide membership comprising businesses of all sizes and across all industry sectors. The PA Chamber is The Statewide Voice of BusinessTM.