DOL Signals Increased Enforcement

US Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez testified before Congress a week ago on the DOL budget request and in so doing, gave an impression that there will be increased enforcement by his department on perceived wage and hour violations.  Aside from minimum wage issues, the Obama administration is increasing their focus on overtime pay.  During…

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White House Planning “Worker Summit” for Fall

As if the administration’s egregious actions regarding minimum wages, union elections, paid sick leave and joint employer rules weren’t enough mischief, the President, as he vetoed the “ambush election” fix (above), reiterated his intention to host a workers summit later this year, ostensibly to rally organized labor and other activists for more pro-union initiatives and…

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At the State Level

As legislative sessions begin to get more involved, we’re seeing more action now in state houses across the country.  The Maine legislature recently hosted a packed public hearing at which they took testimony on a number of different proposals to increase the minimum wage by various amounts.  Negotiations are now underway to find a suitable…

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IFA Injunction Tossed Out in Seattle Challenge

Speaking of lawsuits and court decisions, the lawsuit initiated last year by the International Franchise Association (IFA) in the wake of Seattle passing a new $15 minimum wage law suffered a major defeat when the US District Court in Seattle rejected all of the IFA arguments and refused to enjoin the law, which will take…

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IFA Injunction Denied by Federal Court over Seattle Law

In a clear blow to franchise industry interests, the International Franchise Association’s lawsuit seeking to enjoin the Seattle Minimum Wage law from taking effect as scheduled on April 1 was denied by the Federal Court in Seattle.  In its decision, the court rejected every IFA argument that allowing certain provisions of the law to take…

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Target Follows Suit and Increases Minimum Wages

It was reported this week by the Wall Street Journal that retailing giant Target would also be increasing the minimum wages paid to their lowest paid earners to $9/hour effective April.  Target is not specifically matching the increases that Wal-Mart, the Minnesota-based Target’s major competitor announced recently.  Wal-Mart last month announced wage increases to $9…

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Florida County Passes Wage Theft Ordinance

Florida’s Osceola County, which includes the cities of Kissimmee, St. Cloud and Buenaventura Lakes, has passed an ordinance that provides for recovery of wage theft and underpayment of wages claims to be resolved without going through Florida courts.  The ordinance, approved on a 4 -1 vote, is based on a similar one in Miami-Dade County,…

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Maine Considers Host of Minimum Wage Bills

An array of bills seeking to increase the minimum wage in the state of Maine are under consideration by the legislature in the capital of Augusta.  The minimum wage battle is shaping up as a classic one in light of the fact that the recently re-elected popular republican Governor Paul LePage is advocating right to…

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Styrofoam Ban Pushed in Maine

Minimum wages are not the only issues being considered in the state of Maine as the Environment and Natural Resources Committee held a hearing earlier this week on a bill that will ban the use of Styrofoam food and beverage containers in the state.  Lincolnville democratic representative Christine Burstein filed the legislation which was the…

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Other Big Box Retailers Look To Raise Minimums

Fresh on the heels of Wal-Mart announcing that they will increase their minimum wages across the company, we noted that others, including TJX Companies and Kohls have said they are looking at theirs and will be increasing them across their footprint as well.  Although one would hope this will stem the tide and allow the…

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