This week the White House released the final overtime rule, which the Administration says will extend overtime eligibility to more than four million workers. The rule, which will take effect Dec. 1, significantly increases the minimum salary level for salaried employees to qualify as exempt from overtime pay requirements. The rule now sets the minimum salary level for salaried employees at $47,476, up from the previous $23,660. Employers may use a combination of base salary and bonuses to determine total salary, however the base must equal no less than 90 percent of their total earnings. This rule will not affect employees currently identified as non-exempt from overtime. The Department did not make any changes to the "duties test," which defines those positions eligible for overtime exemption.
This rule will have a dramatic effect on the golf industry. Positions may include assistant golf professionals, food and beverage managers, assistant golf superintendents, and other operational supervisors. Operations which operate six months or less may be eligible to claim an exemption under the "Seasonal Amusement or Recreational Establishments" exemption. We have reached out to the Labor Department and requested clarification of this act — created in 2008 — to ensure it is still in effect. We will provide an update in our next IMPACT.
Though limited in their options to comply with the law, employers can:
- Pay time-and-a-half for overtime work.
- Raise workers pay above the new threshold.
- Limit employees' hours to 40 per week.
- Or some combination of the above.
While we fully support ensuring quality staff members are fairly compensated for their work, we believe this new rule goes too far. We will continue to work with legislators to gain their support of bills currently in the House and Senate. This legislation will require the Labor Department to rescind this rule and establish common sense pay rules which support and promote small business workforces. We encourage NGCOA members to reach out to their Senators and Representatives and encourage them to co-sponsor bills S. 2707 and H.R. 4773.
Members are also encouraged to view the Webinar on the Overtime Rule from September 2015. We will be hosting a new webinar on this important issue in the coming weeks, so watch for your invitation.
-The NGCOA Team