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LABI Issues Statement of Support for Overtime Federal Court Complaint


September 21, 2016

Baton Rouge, LA (September 21, 2016) -Today, the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI) issued the following statement in support of the recent federal court complaint filed by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry against the U.S. Department of Labor regarding the newly issued overtime rule.

"LABI supports the coalition of 21 States, which has filed a federal court complaint challenging the U.S. Department of Labor's new overtime rule. This latest executive branch ruling would undoubtedly add to the current burden facing Louisiana businesses, by adding more bureaucracy to the marketplace. By urging the court to prevent implementation of the rule, businesses will not have to immediately cope with the aftermath of more than doubling the minimum salary overtime threshold for public and private workers. The southern region of Louisiana recently experienced a historic flooding event which damaged 12,000 businesses, leaving them struggling to recuperate. This rule would effectively force a choice for flood-affected employers - delay the much-needed recovery efforts or more rapidly deplete the limited funds which they have available for recovery, paying for the higher labor costs dictated by this new rule."

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Labor finalized a rule to require salaried workers earning less than $47,476 to be eligible for overtime pay. ¬The overarching rule applies to executive, administrative and professional workers in the private sector, non-profit organizations, academia and state and local government. Small businesses, in particular, will be impacted.  The new regulation is scheduled to go into effect nationwide on December 1, 2016.

LABI has been working diligently to advocate against the rule and work to prepare the business community for what implementing this rule might mean.

On September 6, 2016, LABI issued a formal request (http://bit.ly/2cRsgRU), to the U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Thomas E. Perez, to delay the implementation of the new federal overtime rule in the 22 Louisiana parishes that were declared disaster areas as a result of the recent historic flooding. The request outlined the devastation facing the southern region of the state and specifically, what impact this rapidly approaching change would have on recovery efforts.

The week of September 12, 2016, LABI traveled to D.C. to meet with the Congressional Delegation, where they asked that Congress push back on the overtime rule. The LABI delegation made the case that the South Louisiana business community, as they recover from a devastating flood event, needs additional time to adjust and prepare for such an impactful change. 

On September 20, 2016, LABI hosted, in their Baton Rouge offices, an "Overtime Overhaul" seminar. The seminar was organized to provide additional information that might more clearly explain how this change will impact small businesses across the flood-ravaged region. While the seminar provided useful information, an overwhelming majority of participants remain apprehensive concerning the impending new overtime policy.