Paul DeCamp, Member of the Firm in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in Law360, in “House Lawmakers Hammer DOL's 'Poorly Conceived' OT Rule,” by Irene Spezzamonte. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

Members of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections scrutinized the U.S. Department of Labor's proposed rule raising the salary threshold to exempt employees from overtime under federal law, with the subcommittee's chair calling it "poorly conceived" and an "end-run around the Constitution" during a hearing Wednesday. …

Employer-side Epstein Becker Green attorney Paul DeCamp, who testified during Wednesday's hearing, called that threshold "wildly out of step with prior increases." He said it represents the highest spike, considering all salary levels implemented between 1940 and 2020, when the threshold was last raised by former President Donald Trump. 

"The proposed rule represents an average annual rate of increase that is between two and three times the historical norm and nearly 66% higher than the highest level of annual increase ever seen over the past 80-plus years," DeCamp said. "Such a dramatic increase is unwise and unnecessary."

DeCamp, a former administrator of the DOL's Wage and Hour Division, also criticized the proposed rule's plan to automatically increase the salary threshold every three years, saying that suggestion flouts the Administrative Procedure Act's guidelines requiring agencies "to use notice-and-comment rulemaking when issuing substantive rules."

"What is really at issue here is nothing more than policy preferences that oscillate from administration to administration," DeCamp said. "Congress, not the department, should set federal labor policy." 

In a response to a question by subcommittee member Eric Burlison, a Republican representative from Missouri, DeCamp also said that the 60-day comment period the DOL afforded to the proposed rule is not sufficient for a regulation of "this magnitude." That point was also raised in October by Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., who chairs the House Education and the Workforce Committee and was also present during Wednesday's hearing. …

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