Pennsylvania on track to expand overtime pay eligibility


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration is on the brink of making Pennsylvania one of a handful of states to expand eligibility for overtime pay beyond federal thresholds, winning a final vote Friday from a state regulatory board.

The Independent Regulatory Review Commission voted 3-2 to approve a regulation that Wolf, a Democrat, first proposed two years ago amid a repeated failure to persuade the Republican-controlled Legislature to raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage above the federal baseline.

The new overtime regulation is estimated to expand overtime pay eligibility to 82,000 workers in the next two years, delivering another $20 million to nearly $23 million a year in increased earnings after the rule takes full effect.

The regulation phases in the increase in two steps and requires in 2022 that salaried workers earning up to $45,500 a year get time-and-a-half pay for any time they work over 40 hours in a week.

The federal government increased the overtime threshold on Jan. 1 to almost $36,000 from $23,660, the first increase since 2004.

The attorney general’s office has up to 30 days to review the regulation for legality, and then it must be published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin, an official state publication, to take effect.

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