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  • Federal Court Blocks Overtime Expansion Rule

    by Michelle Rindels November 2016

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    Copyright 2016 Spokane Spokesman-Review

    Spokesman Review (Spokane, WA)

     

    LAS VEGAS - A federal court on Tuesday blocked the start of a rule that would have made an estimated 4 million more American workers eligible for overtime pay heading into the holiday season, dealing a major blow to the Obama administration's effort to beef up labor laws it said weren't keeping pace with the times.

    The U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas granted the nationwide preliminary injunction, saying the Department of Labor's rule exceeds the authority the agency was delegated by Congress. Overtime changes set to take effect Dec. 1 are now unlikely to be in play before vast power shifts to a Donald Trump administration, which has spoken out against Obama-backed government regulation and generally aligns with the business groups that stridently opposed the overtime rule.

    "Businesses and state and local governments across the country can breathe a sigh of relief now that this rule has been halted," said Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt, who led the coalition of 21 states and governors fighting the rule and has been a frequent critic of what he characterized as Obama administration overreach. "Today's preliminary injunction reinforces the importance of the rule of law and constitutional government."

    The regulation sought to shrink the so-called "white collar exemption" that allows employers to skip overtime pay for salaried administrative or professional workers who make more than about $23,660 per year. Critics say it's wrong that some retail and restaurant chains pay low-level managers as little as $25,000 a year and no overtime - even if they work 60 hours a week.

    Under the rule, those workers would have been eligible for overtime pay as long as they made less than about $47,500 a year, and the threshold would readjust every three years to reflect changes in average wages.

    The Department of Labor said the changes would restore teeth to the Fair Labor Standards Act, which it called "the crown jewel of worker protections in the United States." Inflation weakened the act: overtime protections applied to 62 percent of U.S. full-time salaried workers in 1975 but just 7 percent today. The agency said it's now considering all its legal options.

    "We strongly disagree with the decision by the court, which has the effect of delaying a fair day's pay for a long day's work for millions of hardworking Americans," the labor department said in a statement. "The department's overtime rule is the result of a comprehensive, inclusive rulemaking process, and we remain confident in the legality of all aspects of the rule."

    The Department of Labor could appeal the Tuesday ruling.

    Related from AB: Understanding the Dept. of Labor’s New Overtime Rules

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    November 23, 2016
     
     
     

     

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  • HS Sues Association After Controversial Playoff Loss

    by Courtney Cameron November 2016

    Fenwick High School filed a lawsuit Monday against the Illinois High School Association after the board of directors made the decision to uphold an illegitimate overtime win for Plainfield North in the class 7A semifinals.

  • HS Postseason Ban Overturned After Eligibility Hearing

    by Courtney Cameron November 2016

    On Tuesday, the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association called for a hearing to investigate the eligibility of Wayne Hills varsity football players Hunter and Tyler Hayek. Claims of ineligibility were based on the assertion that the brothers transferred to the Wayne Hills school district in October of last year without registering a suitable change of residence. Evidence to these claims was provided by driver’s licenses showing a previous address in Woodland park, and a voter registration for the boys’ father under the same outdated address.

  • Columbia Suspends Wrestling Season to Investigate Group Chat

    by Courtney Cameron November 2016

    One week after the Harvard men’s soccer team’s “scouting report” was publicized and condemned by university officials, the Columbia University wrestling team finds itself at the hub of a similar scandal. The team has been called out by student journalists who gained access to private messages sent by the team using the app GroupMe which contained a sequence of racist, misogynistic and homophobic slurs.

  • Colorado FB Coaches Call for Playoff Ranking Reform

    by Courtney Cameron November 2016

    After a new ranking system produced an unlikely playoffs roster, high school coaches across the state of Colorado are looking to the Colorado High School Activities Association for revision in 2017.

  • UW Student-Athletes Tweet for Change

    by Courtney Cameron November 2016

    On Monday, University of Wisconsin student-athletes took to twitter in a campaign to raise awareness of the problems inherent in a system that they say lauds the athlete and dismisses the student. According to ESPN, a score of UW football players as well as celebrated basketball player Nigel Hayes have shared a statement that earnestly asks for respect and understanding. The athletes are calling on university officials to take a stand, address head-on the issues that student-athletes of color face daily on college campuses around the United States and take the initiative to effect real change.

  • Big Ten’s Friday Night Turf Invasion

    by Emily Attwood November 2016

    Tuesday’s Big Ten announcement that it will add six prime-time Friday games to its schedule has been met with strong reactions from football fans and athletics administrators, and not many are excited about the decision. From high school associations who see the Friday night games as an invasion of their turf to member colleges who view the games as a logistics nightmare — not to mention the general fan opinion that the move represents an egregious money grab — the reactions have been swift and loud.

  • Wisconsin AD: Noose Incident to Bring Policy Changes

    by Paul Steinbach November 2016

    University of Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez indicated Wednesday that stadium policy will change in the wake of an incident involving fans in costume at the Badgers’ home football game Oct. 29 against Nebraska. One fan wore masks depicting U.S. president Barack Obama and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton while also wearing a striped prison suit and a noose around his neck. A second fan, dressed as presidential candidate Donald Trump, held the end of the rope.

  • LHSAA Suspends Coaches, Vacates Wins for HS Team

    by Courtney Cameron October 2016

    After receiving an anonymous tip concerning the eligibility of several student-athletes on the Belaire High School football team, the Louisiana High School Athletic Association conducted an investigation which resulted in both disciplinary and administrative probation. The consequences include a $2,000 fine, suspensions for two coaches and five retroactive forfeits for the Belaire Bengals.

  • Report: Louisville to Receive Notice of Allegations

    by Jason Scott October 2016

    The University of Louisville basketball program is expected to receive a notice of allegations from the NCAA stemming from a yearlong investigation into an alleged prostitution scandal.