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April 13, 2016

King pens letter urging changes to proposed overtime regulations

On Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Angus King wrote a letter to the Office of Management and Budget to express his concerns about a proposed rule by the Department of Labor that would update the overtime threshold at which an individual is considered salaried and exempt from overtime pay.

Currently, the overtime threshold — the salary at which employees are no longer automatically eligible for overtime — sits at $455 per week. The proposed rule change from the DOL would increase the threshold by 113% from the current salary threshold to $970 per week.

In his letter to the Office of Management and Budget, King voiced his support for raising the threshold, but believed the expectations for businesses to be within compliance of the rule change within six months could make it difficult for businesses across the country to adjust their budgets accordingly and transition smoothly to the overtime threshold increase.

"While I support the overall aim of increasing wages for Americans, I have serious concerns about the proposed overtime rule's impact in Maine," King wrote in his letter to the office. "I strongly believe that DOL can achieve the goal of improving the outdated overtime threshold without creating significant burdens on employers or unintended consequences for employees. I ask that your office conduct a fair and thorough review of the rule and ensure that the DOL has conducted a comprehensive analysis of the rule's impact on small businesses."

To make the transition easier, King supported regional overtime standards that would reflect both geographic and economic conditions and a tiered implementation timeline, similar to federal minimum wage standards.

Read more

New OT rule praised, others say it goes too fast, too far

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