Home » Obama administration says overtime rule is legal, despite judge’s order

Obama administration says overtime rule is legal, despite judge’s order

The Obama administration says its regulation mandating overtime pay for millions of workers is legal, despite a federal judge’s decision that blocks the rule from taking effect, the Washington Times is reporting.

“We strongly disagree with the decision by the court, which has the effect of delaying a fair day’s pay for a long day’s work for millions of hardworking Americans,” the Department of Labor said in a statement. “The department’s overtime rule is the result of a comprehensive, inclusive rulemaking process, and we remain confident in the legality of all aspects of the rule.”

The statement said the administration is “currently considering all of our legal options.” More on this story from the Washington Times

The Bottom Line: Federal Judge blocks overtime rule, halting Dec. 1 implementation

By Jacqueline Pitts, The Bottom Line

On Tuesday, Texas U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant temporarily halted the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s contentious overtime rule from going into effect on Dec. 1. The judge issued a temporary injunction to give the courts more time to evaluate the Department’s authority to issue the rule along with the merits of the rule.

The regulation, which doubles the salary threshold for determining if an employee is exempt from overtime pay, is expected to cost employers in Kentucky $19 million in added labor and compliance costs. The rule also provided for an automatic change to the threshold every three years without a formal rule-making process.

Because of the cost of the rule on Kentucky businesses, the Ky. Chamber opposes the rule and urged Congress to support the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act earlier this year. The legislation would have stopped the rule from taking effect and would have required the U.S. Dept. of Labor to consider economic implications of the rule.

The temporary injunction is significant because review of the rule by the courts will likely stretch into the next administration and session of Congress. This will give Congress time to act on the regulation such as by passing the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act. Additionally, President-elect Trump could choose not to defend the rule in court. The overtime rule is one of many regulations President-elect Trump voiced opposition to during the campaign.

For more state government news go to the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce’s The Bottom Line blog.