Controversial Overtime Rule Derailed By Federal Judge

A federal rule requiring overtime pay for a wide swath of new employees has been stalled by a federal judge. Its likelihood of implementation now appears unlikely, given the pending change in federal administration.

According to The Hill, the ruling was issued using an argument explicitly recognizing the pending end of the federal political term:

In a 20-page order, Texas U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant issued a temporary injunction halting the rule nationwide.

“Due to the approaching effective date of the Final Rule, the Court’s ability to render a meaningful decision on the merits is in jeopardy,” he wrote. “A preliminary injunction preserves the status quo while the Court determines the department’s authority to make the Final Rule as well as the Final Rule’s validity.”

Multiple state governments had filed the suit objecting to the rule change in September.

Read NACo’s analysis of the proposed rule on county governments.

NACo also offered formal comments on the proposed rules.

During a Wednesday morning teleconference of NACo’s northeast region, NACo Legislative Director Deborah Cox offered a quick perspective on the change. “According to many, this could be the first step in stopping that,” she said, “and next year, we have heard that looking at that increase in steps… could be an option.”

The prospects for the potential rule after the judicial stay are more complicated, based on statements by President-elect Trump. Again, from The Hill:

Trump has vowed to roll back Obama regulations that he says are hurting the economy. He expressed support for changing the overtime rule during the presidential campaign.

“Rolling back the overtime regulation is just one example of the many regulations that need to be addressed to do that,” Trump told Circa in August. “We would love to see a delay or a carve-out of sorts for our small business owners.”

Business groups that supported the litigation against the rule hailed the judge’s move.

National Association of Counties’ Associate Legislative Director will be speaking at the MACo Winter Conference on legislative and regulatory changes anticipated in the new Administration.

At this year’s MACo Winter Conference, NACo’s Associate Legislative Director for Health, Brian Bowden, will be addressing the Maryland Association of County Human Resources Officers on the change of Administration in the White House and potential effects on federal health and labor laws and regulations, including the Affordable Care Act and the Overtime Rules.

Date & Time: Thursday, December 8, 2016; 11:45 am – 12:45 pm

MACo Human Resources Affiliate Agenda

Learn more about MACo’s Winter Conference:



Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties