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Michigan Gov Wants More Workers to Get Overtime Pay

October 26, 2019

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

LANSING, Mich.—Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Oct. 24 that she plans to increase the number of workers in the state eligible for overtime pay. Only 5% of Michigan workers now get overtime, down from 63% in 1975, according to Whitmer’s office, because the current federal standard allows employers to exempt salaried workers from getting time-and-a-half when they work more than 40 hours a week if they make more than $23,660 a year. The governor ordered the state Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity to raise that cutoff point to $51,000, which she said would make another 200,000 Michigan workers eligible for overtime pay. The Trump administration will raise the federal cutoff to $35,568 in January after federal courts blocked the Obama administration’s attempt to raise it to $47,476. “In America, hard work should be recognized and rewarded,” Whitmer said in a statement. “When I was growing up, that meant you got overtime if you worked more than 40 hours.” The Department of Labor won’t develop a final version of the proposed increase until next year. The Michigan Chamber of Commerce said it would oppose it. Read more

October 26, 2019

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