Alexander, Johnson Lead 44 Senators in Introducing Congressional Review Act to Stop Backward "Time Card" Overtime Rule

"Time card" rule will raise college tuition, cut non-profit services, send nation's workers backwards—demoting millions of workers back to punching the clock, unable to negotiate flexible work arrangements

Posted on June 7, 2016

WASHINGTON, June 7 – The chairmen of the Senate labor committee and the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee today introduced legislation under the Congressional Review Act to block implementation of the administration’s “Time Card Rule,” also known as the Overtime Rule, which will have workers punching the clock when they come and go from work and unable to negotiate a flexible work arrangement. It will also cost many colleges millions of dollars per year in additional operating costs, potentially raising tuition for college students.

Senate labor committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said: “If the president wants to go around talking about keeping college costs down, how can he justify a rule that, according to one Tennessee independent college, could cost their students nearly $850 per year in increased tuition? There is no question that this rule also hurts those American workers it’s intended to help, through reductions in their hours and diminished workplace flexibility. Workers who today are mid-management or professional employees are not going to like it one bit when their employer tells them that under this new rule they're going to be punching the time-clock when they go in and out of work. Senator Johnson and I have introduced this legislation to protect students, workers and families from the harmful effects of this rule.”

Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) said: “The number one component of a solution to the problems facing America is economic growth. Yet a growing federal regulatory burden that imposes as much as $2 trillion a year in costs on the American economy stifles growth. Now, the Obama administration is adding yet another regulation that will increase costs to businesses, non-profits and colleges, depress entrepreneurial spirits and cause negative unintended consequences for employees. I urge my colleagues to join me and Sen. Alexander in overturning this harmful rule in order to protect employers and employees in Wisconsin.”

Background:

In 2015, the Department of Labor released a proposal to increase the salary threshold under which employees qualify for overtime pay. The department’s final rule released last month, which more than doubles that salary threshold – from $23,660 to $47,476, will result in students facing higher tuition costs and workers having less flexibility and opportunity for advancement in the workplace.

The Congressional Review Act legislation introduced today by Senator Lamar Alexander and Senator Ron Johnson would nullify the Administration’s final rule if passed, and prohibit the Administration from issuing a substantially similar rule without congressional approval.

The legislation is co-sponsored by Senators: John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Dan Coats (R-Ind.), Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Dean Heller (R-Nevada), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), David Perdue (R-Ga.), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Tim Scott (R-S.C.), Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), David Vitter (R-La.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

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For access to this release and Chairman Alexander’s other statements, click here.