New NLRB standard exposes more employers to union, other pressures

August 27, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has adopted a new and broader standard of what constitutes joint employment by taking a stand that abandons a long-accepted standard in favor of one the Board claims better reflects “the current economic landscape.”

The new view of joint employment will bring major change not just to employers using staffing agencies but also to employers that operate on a franchise model or use various kinds of contingent workers, according to attorneys closely watching the Board’s actions.

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Appeals court revives new homecare worker rules on minimum wage, overtime

August 25, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

A new rule from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requiring minimum wage and overtime pay for many homecare workers is set to take effect after a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The DOL instituted a rule in 2013 that removed the domestic service exemption for homecare workers hired by third-party agencies. Previously, workers providing companionship or live-in care for the elderly and disabled were exempt from the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) even if they were employed by a third party.

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NLRB dismisses petition to unionize Northwestern football players

August 17, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

Just how the dismissal of the petition to unionize some Northwestern University football players will affect other representation issues before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is uncertain, but one issue the Board didn’t touch is whether scholarship football players should be considered employees.

The NLRB announced on August 17 that it had unanimously decided to dismiss the 2014 unionization petition because “asserting jurisdiction would not promote labor stability” because of the nature and structure of the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).

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OFCCP issues checklist on disability employment requirements

August 17, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has published a checklist designed to help contractors analyze whether their affirmative action plans meet the government’s requirements for ensuring employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

The checklist is designed to help federal contractors meet the requirements of Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act.

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New law allows veteran preference for private employers in Nebraska

by Mark M. Schorr

Private employers in Nebraska will be allowed to implement policies giving hiring preference to veterans when a new law takes effect on August 30.

Legislative Bill 272 will allow private employers with one or more employees to have a preference for veterans in hiring decisions without violating other laws that prohibit employment discrimination. Covered veterans include individuals who (1) served full-time in the U.S. armed forces with military pay and allowances and (2) received an honorable or general discharge.

The law also covers the spouses of veterans who were killed in hostile action or suffered a 100 percent permanent disability as determined by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The law doesn’t cover individuals whose service was solely for training or determining physical fitness.

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Categories: HR Hero Alerts / Nebraska

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Houston Equal Rights Ordinance going on November ballot

Voters in Houston will decide the fate of the controversial Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO) when they go to the polls in November. On August 5, the Houston City Council decided to put the measure on the ballot after the Texas Supreme Court ruled on July 24 that the council had to either repeal the ordinance or put it to the voters.

The city council passed HERO in May 2014, but the ordinance was the target of a petition drive to have it repealed. At first, the city secretary said opponents of the measure had enough signatures to force a vote. Later, many of the signatures were thrown out, but the supreme court decided the petition was properly certified.

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Time running out to make comments on proposed overtime rule

August 03, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

Employers wishing to make their views known on a proposed rule aimed at making nearly five million more workers exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and therefore eligible for overtime pay have through September 4 to submit comments.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released a proposed rule on July 6 that would guarantee overtime pay to most salaried white-collar workers earning less than an estimated $970 a week ($50,440 a year) in 2016. Currently, the salary threshold for an employee to be exempt from the FLSA is $455 a week ($23,660 a year). The salary threshold was last revised in 2004.

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New York fast-food employers bracing for $15 minimum wage

July 24, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

by Tammy Binford

New York fast-food workers may be celebrating the likelihood of a $15-an-hour minimum wage phased in over the next few years, but others are questioning the justification offered for the raise.kitchen of a chinese restaurant

A three-member wage board appointed by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo recommended the new minimum wage for fast-food workers July 22. It won’t take effect without an order from the state’s acting labor commissioner, which is expected.

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Contractors face August 1 deadline for new veteran reporting form

Beginning August 1, federal contractors must use the new VETS-4212 report to provide information to the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) about their affirmative action efforts in employing veterans.

The VETS-4212 report replaces the VETS-100 and VETS-100A forms required by the regulations implementing the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA) that became final in September 2014.

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North Dakota eases PTO payout rules

by Lisa Edison-Smith

Because of new legislation taking effect August 1, private-sector employers in North Dakota will find it easier to avoid paying out unused paid time off (PTO) or vacation time when employees quit.

Under the old law, an employer was required to pay a departing employee for any PTO or vacation time that was “available for the employee to use” at the time of separation. The old rule could be expensive for employers. For example, an employee who was entitled to 12 days of PTO per year and was eligible to take the entire 12 days at the time of her separation from employment was entitled to be paid for all 12 unused days, even if she quit on January 2. That was true even if the employer had a policy saying that PTO was “earned” at a rate of one day per month.

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