The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was all the talk for a significant portion of 2016, and then—silence.
Employers across the country were poised to implement the rules increasing the minimum salary threshold from $455 per week to $913 on December 1, 2016. Just 10 days before the effective date, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction halting the rule from taking effect. At the DOL’s request, an appeal to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is still holding while the Department is determining the new rules.
This fall, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) conducted a series of listening sessions in Atlanta, Georgia; Seattle, Washington; Kansas City, Missouri; Denver, Colorado; in September, 2018. The last session was held in Washington, D.C. in October 2018.
Although these sessions were intended to solicit feedback from various employer and employee groups regarding the duties tests or white-collar regulations, there was considerable discussion of the aforementioned 2016 minimum salary threshold final rule.
These sessions were led by several high ranking DOL officials and attended by attorneys, employee advocates, nonprofits, public sector organizations, and small business and educational institutions, among others. Representatives from higher education and K-12 schools appeared at four sessions.
Most representatives expressed disappointment over the fact teachers and faculty, particularly adjunct faculty, weren’t included in the minimum salary threshold update. Currently, teachers—although exempt under the white collar exemption (29 C.F.R. Part 541)—aren’t subject to the minimum salary threshold.
You can find transcripts for all the listening sessions at the Regulations.gov website.
At this time, the DOL plans to publish a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) of the regulations by March of 2019. Typically, after the notice is published, there’s a period of public comments, before the DOL issues final rules. There are no firm, published dates at this time.
TASB HR Services will continue to monitor the activities of the DOL and update Texas school districts on any changes and evaluate the potential impact.