Alabama Republican Introduces Bill to Eliminate Overtime Pay
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, April 21, 2013
I wouldn’t have believed it had I not read it for myself from the official Congressional website.
U.S. Representative Martha Roby, a Republican from Alabama’s 2d Congressional District has introduced H.R. 1406, officially named the “Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013” which would END the requirement of the Fair Labor Standards Act for employers to pay Time-and-a-Half to employees for every hour worked over 40 in one week.
The Congressional Budget Office has reported on the bill, and in part wrote that:
“H.R. 1406 would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to provide compensatory time for employees in the private sector. In lieu of overtime pay, employees could receive compensatory time off at a rate not less than one and one-half hours for each hour of employment for which overtime pay would otherwise have been required. Such compensatory time could be provided only in accordance with a collective bargaining agreement or with the consent of affected employees. The changes would be effective for five years after enactment of the bill.”
The CBO’s full report of the one page document may be downloaded here:
Mrs. Roby’s act, H.R. 1406, would be, according to the CBO report, “revenue neutral.” In other words, it would NOT affect the cost or performance of the federal government, or of state or local governments, nor would it impose any costs upon them. In fact, the report states:
“Enacting H.R. 1406 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply. Implementing the bill also would not affect spending subject to appropriation. H.R. 1406 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.”
Note to the reader: Contained in this entry are Links to these topics on the Wikipedia site: Fair Labor Standards Act, Unfunded Mandates Reform Act, Congressional Budget Office, compensatory time, Martha Roby, U.S. House of Representatives, Alabama, Wikipedia, Alabama’s 2d Congressional District, Mises Institute, child labor, collective bargaining agreement, and collective bargaining.
This is a blatant effort to eliminate employees legal rights and protections.
In my opinion, Mrs. Roby and the exceeding majority of her GOP cohorts are radicals who are Hell-bent upon destroying every hard-gained law that protects American employees from abuses by their employers. It wouldn’t surprise me to continue to see efforts to whittle away at Labor Laws, including those forbidding Child Labor. This is such a shocking development that I am incensed beyond imagination. It would not surprise me in the least to continue seeing such efforts by Republicans to chip away at Employees Rights, up to and including prohibitions on Child Labor.
Ideologically, of course, the action proposed by this bill is in keeping with the radicalized wing of the GOP, which has been hijacked and co-opted by the TEA Party movement, which is nothing more than a thinly disguised Libertarian in Republican’s clothes. Those are the types who also align themselves with the Utopian, ivory-towered, theoretical visions of the Mises Institute, which is headquartered in Auburn, Alabama. For those who may not be aware, the Mises Institute teaches that government should not exist, but that instead of government, free enterprise should rule mankind. Their theoretical vision for “free markets” cannot work, because it supposes a perfect world.
Concerning H.R. 1406 introduced by Mrs. Roby, it is also a hypocritical bill, because “compensatory time could be provided only in accordance with a collective bargaining agreement or with the consent of affected employees,” and as is well known, Republicans are at increasing odds with Labor Unions and Organized Labor, and continue seeking to enact laws that strip away protections granted by collective bargaining agreements, which themselves are virtually non-existent in so-called “Right to Work” states, which in large part are in the Southeast. The term itself – Right to Work – is a misnomer, because in those states, an employee has NO RIGHT to work, and can be fired for any reason. Your hair is curly? You’re fired. Your eyes are blue? You’re fired. The “Right to Work” states are also called “Employment At Will” states, which is an attempt at “rebranding” the issue, as if it empowers the employee, when in fact, it does not.
Philosophically, H.R. 1406 is an effort to return to the “bad old days” in which deaths in unsafe working conditions were common throughout the United States; in which Child Labor was common; in which employers did not have to pay their employees any wages, and often changed their rates of pay – to reduce it – without the employees’ knowledge or consent, and more.
It is, in essence, very much like the story told in the Exodus account, in which the Hebrew children suffered oppression in their labors at the hands of Pharaoh, who at last, told them that they were to “make more bricks, but could not use hay.” And surprisingly, it’s not a new message. Today, we say “Do more with less.” In that historical narrative, in return, Moses delivered a message to Pharaoh from the Almighty to “Let my people go.”
In the modern scenario, people are already not being paid enough to survive, CEO’s, BIG BUSINESS and the über-wealthy are paying lobbyists to curry favor with Congress to lower tax rates upon the very wealthy or eliminate corporate income tax, and like modern-day pirates, they hide their vast accumulated wealth in tropical island paradise tax havens such as the Antilles, Bermuda, Caymans, Seychelles and more. It’s theft by deception, pure and simple.
In turn, government oppresses the employees by making or eliminating laws that would empower or favor employees over the denizen hoards of corporate lawyers protecting their Big Business employers, and they’re made to believe they’re free, but that somehow, when the weak are made strong, it is the “liberal Democrats” and Nancy Pelosi who are behind every effort to undermine their way of life.
Martha Roby’s bill – H.R. 1406 – would render employees powerless against their employers who in turn could legally refuse to pay them for mandatory overtime. Don’t like those terms? Don’t like working here? Tough. You’re free to leave. After all, this is an “employment at will state.”
Is this the scenario you want for yourself or your children?
What do you think?
Addendum, Saturday, 23 November 2013
It’s GREAT to read the vigorous discussion in this thread!
There are jobs where such “comp time” is a regular part of the compensation package, and given IN ADDITION TO overtime, regular time, and vacation time. In some, but not all, cases, if the comp time is not used in a given period – such as in a year – the time is lost, and the employee is paid for all unused time. In other scenarios, comp time may be accrued without limit. In the better scenarios where comp time is an ADDITIONAL PART of the total compensation package, comp time is paid out completely when an employee leaves the company. But not all states require that to be done.
Rep. Roby’s bill would supplant, i.e. completely REPLACE the legal requirement to pay time-and-a-half for overtime with CTO – Compensatory Time Off.
Here’s the Office of Personnel Managment’s website on Comp Time for federal employees.