President Donald Trump's administration today released a new rule guaranteeing overtime pay only to those making more than $35,568. A similar rule advanced by the Obama administration would have seen the threshold increase to $55,000 next year.
Mainers making more than $36,000 are already guaranteed overtime protections under state law. Trump's move leaves approximately 28,000 Maine workers without overtime protections compared to Obama's rule.
When overtime protections were first introduced in 1975, they covered nearly two-thirds of American workers. Now they cover just 7%. The Maine legislature could consider a bill next session, LD 402, that would expand state overtime protections to thresholds originally proposed by the Obama administration.
“Mainers are working longer and harder than ever, and they deserve to be compensated for their work. It’s one of the basic ideas our workforce was built on – if you work hard and put in extra hours, you should be paid for those hours,” said Maine People’s Alliance co-director Amy Halsted.
"President Trump is gutting President Obama's overtime protections and tens of thousands of Mainers will continue to be underpaid for their work. Next year, Maine lawmakers must act to fulfill Obama's promise by raising state overtime protections to the level originally intended before the Trump administration's cuts."