Biden’s new overtime rule another big blow to small businesses

President Joe Biden continues to meddle in the practices of small businesses across America, with the latest focus being on overtime pay for employees.

Advocates for small and independent business owners blasted the “complicated mandate” announced by the Biden administration that will require overtime pay for millions of eligible salaried workers.

“Effective July 1, 2024, the salary threshold will increase to the equivalent of an annual salary of $43,888 and increase to $58,656 on Jan. 1, 2025,” a Department of Labor press release announced.

“The July 1 increase updates the present annual salary threshold of $35,568 based on the methodology used by the prior administration in the 2019 overtime rule update. On Jan. 1, 2025, the rule’s new methodology takes effect, resulting in the additional increase. In addition, the rule will adjust the threshold for highly compensated employees,” the press release continued. “Starting July 1, 2027, salary thresholds will update every three years, by applying up-to-date wage data to determine new salary levels.”

“This rule will restore the promise to workers that if you work more than 40 hours in a week, you should be paid more for that time,” Acting Secretary Julie Su said in a statement. “Too often, lower-paid salaried workers are doing the same job as their hourly counterparts but are spending more time away from their families for no additional pay. That is unacceptable. The Biden-Harris administration is following through on our promise to raise the bar for workers who help lay the foundation for our economic prosperity.”

Prior to proposing the new rule, the Labor Department reportedly “conducted extensive engagement with employers, workers, unions and other stakeholders” and purportedly read through more than 33,000 comments.

“The Department of Labor is ensuring that lower-paid salaried workers receive their hard-earned pay or get much-deserved time back with their families,” Wage and Hour Administrator Jessica Looman said. “This rule establishes clear, predictable guidance for employers on how to pay employees for overtime hours and provides more economic security to the millions of people working long hours without overtime pay.”

But the administration’s new rule was summarily challenged.

“The Biden administration’s new overtime rule is the latest Democrat attack on American small businesses whose profit margins are already being squeezed by overregulation, inflation, and high credit costs,” Alfredo Ortiz, CEO of Job Creators Network, said in a statement.

“What’s more, the rule hurts hardworking employees trying to climb the corporate ladder who will find themselves demoted back to hourly positions so employers can avoid associated overtime costs. This especially hurts those who depend on work ethic rather than fancy educations. The next Republican administration should make it a top priority to reverse this new overtime standard,” Ortiz added.

 

Beth Milito of the National Federation of Independent Business had the same view.

“This rule is another costly hoop for small business owners to jump through,” Milito, executive director of the NFIB’s small business legal center, said. “Small businesses will need to spend valuable time evaluating their workforce to properly adjust salaries or reclassify employees in accordance with this complicated mandate.”

Frieda Powers

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