Earlier this year the business community was able to push a bi-weekly pay bill through the legislature allowing those Rhode Island businesses that qualified to pay their workers on a bi-weekly basis. The Department of Labor and Training’s proposed regulations to implement the new law included a requirement that businesses re-qualify every two years. And then DLT scheduled the public hearing on the proposed regulation on the Friday after Thanksgiving at 2:00 P.M.
Since this was in the middle of a holiday weekend coinciding with one of the busiest days of the year, especially for small retailers, NFIB and other business groups requested a change in the hearing date.
After the complaints by NFIB and several other business groups, the Department did in fact schedule an additional public hearing on Monday, December 9, at 2:00 – 3:00 P.M. at the Department of Labor and Training, Building 73-1, 1511 Pontiac Avenue, Cranston, RI 02920. We hope small business owners will attend to indicate that paying employees on a bi-weekly basis is efficient and cost effective and that re-qualifying every two years to continue to pay workers on a bi-weekly basis is an additional burden that neither RI small businesses nor Department staff need. The law already requires companies that are not in good standing to notify the Department. Finally, small business owners should request the establishment of a time frame for Department approval or disapproval of applications to pay on a bi-weekly basis to avoid unnecessary delays.
Small business owners may testify in person between 2 and 3:00 PM on December 9 OR they may submit written testimony at the same address to the attention of the Office of Legal Counsel.