Thursday, November 24, 2016
In a blow to the Obama administration’s labor- law plans, a federal court has blocked the start of a rule that would have made an estimated 4 million more American workers eligible for overtime pay heading into the holiday season.
As a result of Tuesday’s ruling, overtime changes set to take effect Dec. 1 are now unlikely to be in play before vast power shifts to a Donald Trump administration, which has spoken out against Obama-backed government regulation and generally aligns with the business groups that stridently opposed the overtime rule.
The U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas granted the nationwide preliminary injunction, saying the Department of Labor’s rule exceeds the authority the agency was delegated by Congress.
The regulation sought to shrink the so-called “white collar exemption” that allows employers to skip overtime pay for salaried administrative or professional workers who make more than about $23,660 per year.
Critics say it’s wrong that some retail and restaurant chains pay low-level managers as little as $25,000 a year and no overtime – even if they work 60 hours a week.