Overtime Pay in 2017?

As a new administration steps in, c-store owners are wondering how it will affect business—specifically, how the rules may change regarding employee hours and wages.

C Square members have shared their slight concerns—specifically about changes to overtime pay, as it was the focus of a very recent federal court ruling.

In November 2016, a Texas judge effectively blocked the US Department of Labor’s rule requiring overtime pay. The Department’s rule would have moved the salary cap from $455 a week to $921 a week for workers receiving overtime pay. So while this is not currently being enforced, an appeal has been filed—meaning the rules can change again quickly.

“Say you are paying a manager,” explains Tom Terrano, CBC Learning Center Instructor. “Most likely that person works more than 40 hours a week and gets paid a flat fee. Now let’s say a standard workweek for that manager might be 50 hours. Under the new rule, they would have to be paid for that extra 10 hours.”

Terrano adds that many small c-store owners may not be able to afford to pay the overtime; so instead, they could cap weekly hours to 40.

“Owners would just control time and pay differently. More than likely they would not raise salaries, but reduce hours worked to comply,” he states.

That said, he personally encourages c-store owners to consider paying more than minimum wage.

“When I was an operator, I demanded a lot from my people so I paid more than the minimum wage. But, I expected a lot out of them. I always thought incentives were the best approach.”

Whether or not the rules change, NACS is advising that c-stores be aware and prepared, and Terrano agrees that owners should be ready.

“Many are taking the viewpoint that the Texas judge put a stop to it, which is true for now. It doesn’t mean it’s not going to happen.”
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