Bernie Sanders hails ‘long overdue’ OT expansion
Democratic presidential candidates are rallying behind the Obama administration’s proposed overtime regulations.
Frontrunner Hillary Clinton called the new rules a “win for our economy and workers.”
“President Obama is right to update overtime rules for the modern workforce — a win for our economy and workers nationwide,” Clinton tweeted Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) also welcomed the draft overtime regulations, saying they are “long overdue.”
The Labor Department is proposing a new overtime rule that will expand the number of middle-class workers who qualify for time-and-a-half pay. This is the first time the rules are being updated in more than a decade.
“This long overdue change in overtime rules is a step in the right direction and good news for workers,” Sanders said in a statement.
“Businesses no longer will be able to shirk their responsibility to pay fair wages by simply labeling workers earning as little as $24,000-a-year as supervisors,” he added.
Businesses must pay overtime to low-wage employees who work more than 40 hours in a week under current federal law — but many workers do not qualify.
Certain workers making more than $455 a week, or $23,660 a year, are exempt from the rules, if they have a supervisory role at the company.
The Labor Department is looking to raise that threshold to $50,440 annually, or $970 a week, which would bring millions more workers under the umbrella of overtime protections.
Sanders had been calling for the Obama administration to raise the threshold even higher to $1,090 a week, but said he “welcomed” the new rules.