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SHRM Newsletter: National SHRM Legislative Alert RE: Overtime Rules
Posted on Apr. 5, 2016

This is Utah SHRM Legal-mail no. 2016-7 prepared for Salt Lake SHRM, the Human Resources Association of Central Utah (HRACU), the Northern Utah Human Resources Association (NUHRA), the Color Country Human Resources Association (CCHRA), the Bridgerland Society for Human Resource Management and Utah at-large members of the national Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).



Ask your Members of Congress to Cosponsor Legislation (S. 2707/H.R. 4773) to Nullify Current FLSA Overtime Rule and Send Rule Back for a New Economic Analysis!  

As you know, the Department of Labor (DOL) has issued proposed dramatic changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime regulations. SHRM welcomes the introduction of the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act (S. 2707/H.R. 4773), introduced by Representatives Tim Walberg (R-MI) and John Kline (R-MN), and Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

Action Needed:

To help make sure the HR voice is heard, we are looking to our key advocates to urge your members of Congress to support S. 2707 and H.R. 4773, the Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act.

Specifically, this reasonable legislation would:

  • Require the DOL to perform an economic analysis of how changes to overtime regulations will impact nonprofits, small businesses, and employers in other vulnerable industry sectors before issuing a new rule.
  • Prohibit automatic increases in any new rule.
  • Ensure that any proposed changes to the duties test can be reviewed by the public through the formal notice and comment process prior to finalization.

Continue to be an advocacy leader for the profession by visiting SHRM’s call to action to send an email to your members of Congress about this important workplace legislation and ask that they cosponsor the legislation!

  1. Fill out your contact information (be sure to enter your HOME mailing address since the system will correctly match you to your federal congressional district).
  2. Personalize the template email language to include your message with your own story.
  3. Click “submit.

Issue Background:
In the overtime rule proposal, DOL is considering raising the minimum salary threshold to $970 per week ($50,440 annually); an increase of 113%. DOL also proposes increasing this minimum salary on an annual basis by pegging it to the 40th percentile of weekly earnings for full-time salaried workers or by indexing it to inflation for urban goods and services. In addition, DOL proposes publishing these annual increases to the minimum salary only 60 days before they become effective—providing employers and employees with little notice.  

The dramatic increase in the proposed salary level will result in many professional employees being reclassified to non-exempt hourly employees, resulting in less workplace flexibility and forcing employees to closely track their hours. 

While DOL did not offer a specific proposal to modify the duties tests, the department suggested it is considering making some changes. The dramatic increase to the salary level proposed by DOL coupled with almost any changes to the duties test will create many challenges for employers and employees.

SHRM will be alerting its full membership of this critical legislation in the coming days, and urging them to contact their members of Congress and raise the HR voice.

In the meantime, download and utilize the SHRM Advocacy App to receive breaking news on overtime regulations and other workplace issues. The innovative advocacy tool (currently available in app stores under “SHRM Advocacy”) will provide you with all the legislative and advocacy resources you need to take action today and throughout the year.

For more information, please contact Meredith Nethercutt, SHRM’s senior associate for member advocacy, at

Thanks in advance for participating in this critical call to action.

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mikeAttorney Michael
Patrick O'Brien

Mike O’Brien is an experienced and accomplished employment attorney, media lawyer and courtroom litigator.  He is active in SHRM and has received the highest possible reviews from rating services like Martindale - Hubbell (AV rating), Chambers USA, Utah Business Legal Elite, Best Lawyers in America, Who’s Who Legal USA, and SuperLawyers.  HR Executive Online has named him as one of America’s most powerful 100 employment lawyers, but keep in mind, this does not mean he is good at moving heavy furniture.

Awards and Recognition


OBrien Best

Chambers 2011 Attorney

Super Lawyers
Michael Patrick O'Brien

Best Lawyers In America, “Salt Lake City Best Lawyers Employment Law Lawyer Of The Year,” 2011-2012

Best Lawyers In America, First Amendment Law, Labor And Employment Law, 2005-2012

Chambers USA, Labor & Employment, 2003-2011

Employment Lawyer Of The Year, Utah State Bar, 2001

Human Resources Executive, Nation’s Most Powerful Employment Lawyers In America, 2010

Mountain States Super Lawyers, 2007-2012

Utah Business Magazine, Legal Elite, Labor And Employment, 2006-2012