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October 13th, 2017 / by Mike Cooney

Effective Immediately – Oregon Equal Pay Act of 2017

Effective immediately Employers are no longer allowed to ask candidates, or their former employers, about prior salary history. While the full protections of the Oregon Equal Pay Act don’t go into effect in January of 2019, parts of the multi-layered law are effective October 6th, 2017. Similar to the law... more

February 17th, 2017 / by Mike Cooney

BOLI’s Quiet 180 on Overtime Law

A new Portland lawsuit filed in December triggered BOLI to reexamine its overtime guidelines in relation to daily and weekly overtime calculations for manufacturing employees.

Manufacturing is defined on the BOLI site as: “any place where machinery is used for ‘manufacturing purposes,’ which includes the process of making goods or any material produced by machinery; anything made from raw materials by machinery; and the production of articles for use from raw or prepared materials by giving such materials new forms, qualities, properties or combinations, by the use of machinery.”

There are two separate overtime statutes at play for manufacturing employers. One calls for overtime to be paid on any hours worked over 10 hours in a day. The other statute is the one that calls for overtime to be paid on any hours worked over 40 hours in a week. (Of course, there are exemptions and they can be found here.)

Traditionally... more

November 29th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

New Overtime Rule Blocked

A federal judge in Texas blocked the new overtime rules that were to go into effect Thursday, December 1, 2017. The new law, spearheaded by Obama in an effort to raise wages, would have extended mandatory overtime to 4 million employees. (Red Zone HR wrote about the changes here.) With the injunction issued late last week, any changes are on a temporary, yet indefinite, hold. It is unclear how this will proceed and what the new administration will do.

What does this mean for employers now?

There are a few options for employers at this point. The most important thing to realize is this now becomes a business decision unique to your organization, rather than a requirement for legal compliance. Businesses may choose to move forward with the changes as planned or choose to hold. Businesses who have already rolled out the changes may choose to keep them in place or... more

October 26th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

Are We Done Asking For Salary History From Candidates?

A progressive new Massachusetts law banning asking candidates for salary histories during the interview process was signed on August 1st of this year.  This law has quickly gained traction, more than any other employment law prior.  Just four weeks later, New York City and the state of California have already signed similar laws.  Now a delegate from D.C. will introduce the legislature to Congress to make it a nationwide ban.

Little question, big impact

The driving purpose of the law is to increase pay equity among workers, mainly women. Since women are underpaid relative to men performing the same or similar work, the continued practice of basing a new hire’s compensation off of their last jobs compounds the ongoing inequity. Although other groups stand to gain as well.  Recent college graduates who started their first jobs during the recession may see their rates catch up. According to some HR leaders, this... more

June 13th, 2016 / by Mike Cooney

Exempt or Non-Exempt? That is the question

The Department of Labor released their much-anticipated changes to the FLSA overtime exemption rules last month. If you didn’t catch the changes that are coming, then here are the basics of what managers need to know now.

What’s changing and when?

This latest change updates the minimum salary level required for exemption from $23,660 annually to $47,476. Allows for a portion of bonuses, incentives and commissions to be counted toward (up to 10%) the minimum salary requirements, provided bonuses are paid on a quarterly or more frequent basis. Sets total annual compensation for highly compensated employees subject to minimal duties test (link) at 134,004. Changes are to be in place by December 1st, 2016 to be in compliance. Establishes a mechanism for automatically updating salary and compensation levels every three years beginning in 2020.

 

What doesn’t change?

The duties test for exemption. The same exemptions definitions are in place Employers will still need to make sure that the... more
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