Paul DeCamp, Member of the Firm in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC office, was quoted in Employee Benefit News, in “Acosta Out: Where Will DOL Go from Here?” by Nick Otto and Caroline Hroncich.

Following is an excerpt:

In the wake of Labor Secretary Alex Acosta’s decision to resign Friday, industry experts say his replacement may help speed up DOL initiatives ahead of the 2020 election. Acosta will be replaced by Deputy Secretary of Labor Patrick Pizzella, who is regarded by Democrats and labor unions as more aggressively pro-business.

Incoming acting Labor Secretary Pizzella is formerly a member of the Federal Labor Relations Authority appointed by President Barack Obama. …

Paul DeCamp, a member of law firm Epstein Becker Green’s employment, labor and workforce management practice, says that it is likely the course he charts for the department will not differentiate much from Acosta — but as the 2020 election looms, he may have a faster timetable.

“The main point of differentiation appears to be that while the department thus far in the administration has moved in a very slow and cautious manner with respect to nearly all matters of any importance, things are now likely to move at a faster pace,” DeCamp says. “Under this new leadership, there will likely be a renewed commitment to making as much progress as possible to advance the President’s agenda between now and January of 2021.”

Employers should expect Pizzella to prioritize public comments on proposed rules the department has issued, including the Fair Labor Standards Act, DeCamp says. The DOL may also focus on completing updates to Part 541 overtime exemption regulations in a timely manner.

“The department is very much aware of the calendar for completing regulatory actions during the current term, and there will surely be an emphasis on avoiding a repeat of what happened last time with the overtime rule,” DeCamp adds. “We may even see a final rule before the end of the year, or else earlier in 2020 than might have been the case before Secretary Acosta’s departure.”

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