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Employment News

Will Transparent Data Make Workplaces Safer?

By Employment Law, Employment News, News

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) thinks so. In May, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced a ruling that increases data transparency by making information about workplace injuries and illnesses available online. They say that sharing this kind of information publicly helps “reduce work-related injuries and illnesses.” The new rule takes effect on January 1, 2017. It requires certain employers to electronically submit injury and illness data that they are already required to…

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Overtime Overhaul

By Employment Law, Employment News, Payroll

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is close to making a final decision regarding salary levels eligible for overtime pay exemptions. The anticipated outcome is expected to more than double the current annual exemption level of $23,660 to somewhere between $47,000 and $50,000. This change is expected to impact many people including executives, administrators and professionals. For this reason, the new policy is often referred to as the “white-collar exemption.” Employees newly classified as nonexempt…

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Sorting Out the Business of Bathrooms

By Best Practices, Employment Law, Employment News

With all of the discussion about who has the right to use which restroom, I wanted to share legal information from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). A hot topic in North Carolina right now, this issue is sure to be on the dockets of courthouses in many states very soon. First, let’s look at what the law says about “transgender.” From the EEOC website: “Transgender” refers to people whose gender identity and/or expression is…

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What Low Unemployment Rates Mean for Businesses

By Employment News

On the surface, sustained low unemployment rates appear to be a good thing. In the past year, unemployment claims have been below 300,000, which hasn’t happened in more than 40 years. In a March 3, 2016, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution article, Georgia labor commissioner Mark Butler said, “Georgia employers continue to add jobs at a stronger pace than the national over-the-year job growth rate.” The state saw job growth in nine of the eleven major job…

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Maximizing State Jurisdiction Over Minimum Wage

By Employment Law, Employment News

When the cost of living differs from one place to another, there is some common sense in setting different minimum wage levels. These wage decisions seem to be best made at the state level, where the costs of living are best estimated, as opposed to the federal level. Further, the minimum wage may even need to be different within states where different economic conditions exist. Earlier this month, Oregon governor Kate Brown signed a minimum-wage…

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Jobs by the Numbers

By Employment News

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) announced earlier this month that January marked the 71st month of increased job growth. 151,000 new jobs were created in January and the unemployment rate remained at about 4.9%. Additionally, there was “solid” wage growth with average hourly earnings for all private-sector employees increasing by 12 cents.

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