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Businesses Praise New Overtime Rules as Good for the Economy

For Immediate Release: 
May 18, 2016
Contact Info
Bob Keener

WASHINGTON, DC (May 18, 2016)—Yesterday, the Obama Administration announced details of new overtime rules, which would double the income threshold at which workers are exempted from overtime pay from the current $23,660 to $47,476. This rule is expected to make 4.2 million employees eligible for overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours a week.

In response, the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) released a statement praising the new rule. The following may be attributed to Richard Eidlin, Vice President of Policy and Campaigns at ASBC:

“When employers set fairer, clearer wages, they earn dividends with happier, more productive employees. That’s good for a business’ bottom line and for growing the middle class that our nation’s economy depends on. High road businesses understand that compensating their employees for time on the job builds a better work culture.

“We applaud the Department of Labor’s responsiveness to several concerns cited by business leaders. These include: 1/ Updating the salary threshold every three years, so as to allow employers time to adjust to the new wage scales; 2/ Raising the highly compensated employee threshold to reflect that the tasks they perform exempt them from the overtime rules; and 3/ Making no changes in the duties test. That’s why we’ve worked with the Department throughout the rulemaking process to ensure that their changes made sense for all businesses.

“It has long been clear that the existing law, dating back to the 1930s, needed to be modernized. The current rule may, in some cases, create an incentive to misclassify employees as managerial. That can lead to basing overtime eligibility on subjective criteria such as job duties instead of objective standards like income. This rule will help change that, and set clear standards that will benefit employers of all sizes.

“The Department of Labor needs to continue to reach out to American businesses to educate them about this rule’s impacts, and we intend to do the same. Overall, however, we think that businesses will recognize the positive impact this rule can have for them, not just their workers.”

The American Sustainable Business Council advocates for policy change and informs business owners and the public about the need and opportunities for building a vibrant, sustainable economy. Through its national member network it represents more than 200,000 business owners, executives and investors from a wide range of industries.