NFIB warns that the Senate needs to act on overtime deadline before small business owners face potentially ruinous penalties
Washington, D.C (September 29, 2016) – Legislation introduced last night by Sen. James Lankford (R-OK), which would push back the looming deadline for the Department of Labor (DOL) Overtime Rule, should be an urgent priority for the Senate, said the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) today.
“It’s impossible for many small businesses to meet the December 1 deadline, and the clock is ticking,” said Juanita Duggan, NFIB President and CEO. “In just a few weeks, many thousands of small businesses could face heavy penalties for being out of compliance. NFIB is demanding that the Senate take action immediately.”
Sen. Lankford last night, with Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) as original cosponsors, introduced legislation that would delay the compliance date of the new DOL Overtime Rule until June 1, 2017. The U.S. House of Representatives late yesterday passed identical legislation. If the Senate fails to pass the bill, small business owners will have only until December 1st to identify eligible employees, restructure their payroll systems, and potentially convert salaried workers into hourly employees.
“Small employers typically do not have HR departments and compliance professionals to help them implement massive new rules like this,” said Duggan. “Complying with this regulation will be complicated, time-consuming, and expensive. It’s hugely problematic for a wide range of employers, including small businesses, universities and colleges, local governments, and non-profit organizations.”
A coalition of business groups, including NFIB, and a coalition of 21 states filed separate lawsuits last week asking a federal court to block the Overtime Rule. NFIB also filed a petition requesting that the DOL delay the compliance deadline until June 1, 2017, giving small business owners a crucial six-month extension.
“Small businesses are very grateful that Sen. Lankford, Sen. Collins, and Sen. Alexander introduced this delay, and we strongly urge the Senate to make this a high priority,” said Duggan. “Every Senator who says that they’re a supporter of small business needs to vote for this bill before Congress breaks for recess.”
For more information about NFIB, please visit www.nfib.com/overtime.