Paul DeCamp, Member of the Firm in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, was quoted in the Bloomberg Daily Labor Report, in “Punching In: Whiling Away Time at DOL’s Wage and Hour Division,” by Rebecca Rainey and Austin Ramsey. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

Wage and Hour Clock Ticking …

Rebecca Rainey: Now that David Weil has officially withdrawn from consideration as the U.S. Labor Department’s Wage and Hour chief, Jessica Looman, the acting head of the division, faces a countdown to how much longer she can serve in that position … at least sort of.

Under the Federal Vacancy Reform Act, officials are only permitted to serve in an “acting position” for 210 days after a vacancy begins. Because Weil withdrew his candidacy on April 7—subsequent to a failed U.S. Senate vote to advance his nomination—the 210-day timer restarted.

Those inside and outside the administration say they’ve heard crickets about who, and if, anyone will be picked next. There’s not a clear Weil-esque option within the labor world who would be an obvious candidate.

“Like a lot of us, I haven’t heard any particular names get floated for the next nominee,” said Paul DeCamp, a Wage and Hour administrator during the George W. Bush administration. “I would not be surprised if the administration opts to proceed with Jessica Looman. She’s been in the role since day one in terms of running the Wage and Hour Division in this administration. She knows how the agency works at this point. She knows the key personnel at the career ranks and she probably is better situated to get things done now than somebody coming in fresh would be.”

But even if President Joe Biden doesn’t nominate anyone else to the position, Labor Secretary Marty Walsh would be able to delegate some or most of the duties of administrator to Looman, meaning that she would still run the agency, albeit without the official title.


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