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#1 scoutldr

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:08 AM

Any thoughts on how the new overtime edict from the White House will affect Scout councils, specifically camp staff and the Professional Corps? For those who don't follow the news, as of December 1, 2016, anyone not classified as a "Manager" and making less than $47,476 per year ($913 per week) MUST be paid time and a half for any hours in excess of 40 in any given work week. That's up from the current $23,660 ($455 per week).

Personally, I have mixed feelings. On one hand, it's going to increase the cost of doing business (inflation). On the other hand, lots of employees get screwed by being arbitrarily titled "Manager" when they are truly not.
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#2 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:11 AM

I spoke to our council exec this past weekend. They are concerned about this should the rule pass any challenges and be enforced.


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#3 Fehler

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:22 AM

Good for the DE's and other administrative positions.  Pay them, or reduce their duties to get their hours under 40.  Duties eliminated can include harping me about Journey to Excellence and Friends of Scouting.

 

Are camp staff treated as employees, or contract workers, considering the limited camping season?  Contract work is still exempt from overtime, as far as I know.


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#4 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:26 AM

Those extra hours needed won't go away. They never do. This will only cause companies to hire additional staff to fill the hours required. Companies would be better off doing that than paying overtime.

 

It is the same thing that happened with health care benefits. Rather than extend benefits to full time workers they simply cut hours. So now instead of one DE that works 50-60 hours you will get two DEs that work 30 hours. Nothing is saved, more complexity introduced, less will get done.

 

Not a solution.


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#5 scoutldr

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:36 AM

I'm not a labor lawyer, however, in my short career running a consulting firm, I learned that you are either an "employee" or an "independent contractor". The difference is in who specifies the "means and methods" of getting a job done. And if you are a contractor, you have to pay your own AND the employer's share of SS and Workman's comp insurance. In my layman's opinion, camp staff would be employees, since they have a boss telling them where to go, when to be there, and how to do the job. If they are not free to do whatever they want, they are "on the clock".
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#6 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:40 AM

I'm not a labor lawyer, however, in my short career running a consulting firm, I learned that you are either an "employee" or an "independent contractor". The difference is in who specifies the "means and methods" of getting a job done. And if you are a contractor, you have to pay your own AND the employer's share of SS and Workman's comp insurance. In my layman's opinion, camp staff would be employees, since they have a boss telling them where to go, when to be there, and how to do the job. If they are not free to do whatever they want, they are "on the clock".

 

Aren't contractors also told when to work, etc? We use contractors all the time. We define the scope of the work, location, hours, etc. They come and go like employees.

 

I think @Sentinel947 was on camp staff. Maybe he knows how they are treated from a labor perspective. I think a few guys here were camp directors too, maybe they know?


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#7 Fehler

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:47 AM

So, you're saying the new regulations will create jobs?  Excellent! 

 

Yes, employers need to decide if a task that takes 60 hours to complete should be done by one full-time, full-benefit employee making extra overtime who will be there for life, or by 2-3 no-benefit part-time employees working 20-30 hours each, who will jump at a full-time job when one comes by, requiring a rehire and retrain.  Or maybe they can automate administrative assistants, or offshore camp directors to Bangladesh.


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#8 scoutldr

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:56 AM

The difference is "independent contractors" i.e., free lancers. Your "statement of work" is with the Contractor with whom you have a contract. The people who "come and go" are employees of the Contractor. You don't get to tell the contractor HOW to achieve the statement of work, how many people to hire, what to pay them, etc.

Independent contractors are usually "sole proprietors", if I'm not mistaken.

The example I always use is the plumber who buys tools and a truck and a yellow pages ad. You hire him to fix your pipes and he comes out usually onHIS schedule, not yours. You don't get to tell him how to dress, what tools to use, or how long to spend. You pay him for results.

But this gets complicated, and like I said, I'm not an expert.
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#9 scoutldr

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:01 AM

What I see happening is that the job of the DE will become more tightly defined. The jobs that should be done by volunteer youth, Scouters and Commissioner staff will simply not get done. I have seen DEs staffing summer camp, chopping wood at camp, conducting training, attending Blue and Golds and Pinewood Derbies, unloading the popcorn truck and other "duties as assigned". Their core duties are "more units, more scouts and more money".
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#10 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:11 AM

So, you're saying the new regulations will create jobs?  Excellent! 

 

Yes, employers need to decide if a task that takes 60 hours to complete should be done by one full-time, full-benefit employee making extra overtime who will be there for life, or by 2-3 no-benefit part-time employees working 20-30 hours each, who will jump at a full-time job when one comes by, requiring a rehire and retrain.  Or maybe they can automate administrative assistants, or offshore camp directors to Bangladesh.

 

That's not what happens. 

 

Now, you have someone working 50-60 hours a week and considered a full time employee. They get a salary and benefits.

 

If this rule goes in to effect you now have two people doing the work but they become part time employees, will likely be treated as hourly and not salary employees, will NOT get benefits. The net is that the work still gets done, but that is not what any real economist would call "job creation". Politicians call that job creation, but you are creating burger-flipping jobs, not real career-oriented jobs.

 

This does not drive growth. This does not drive economic stability. It increases the cost to delivery a service (constant retraining and rehiring) and it devalues the role of the worker. This does the opposite of what the government says it wants to do.


Edited by Krampus, 19 May 2016 - 10:15 AM.

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#11 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:13 AM

The difference is "independent contractors" i.e., free lancers. Your "statement of work" is with the Contractor with whom you have a contract. The people who "come and go" are employees of the Contractor. You don't get to tell the contractor HOW to achieve the statement of work, how many people to hire, what to pay them, etc.
 

 

Absolutely you can. I have seen hundreds of government and non-government contracts the spell out exactly how the contractor will execute the work.


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#12 scoutldr

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:17 AM

And that's precisely why the Govt pays 2-3x more than it should cost for a given result.
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#13 Beavah

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:31 AM

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The difference is "independent contractors" i.e., free lancers. Your "statement of work" is with the Contractor with whom you have a contract. The people who "come and go" are employees of the Contractor. You don't get to tell the contractor HOW to achieve the statement of work, how many people to hire, what to pay them, etc.
 

 

Yah, this is true, eh?  It's not what's at issue, though.

 

The thing we're talkin' about here is who qualifies as an "exempt" employee under da Fair Labor Standards Act.   "Exempt" employees are typically what you'd consider a salaried employee, eh?  Yeh don't track their hours, yeh don't track their production, and yeh don't pay them overtime.  CEOs, VPs, senior managers and such for sure, but there a lot of classifications.  As a group these are called Executive, Administrative, and Professionals (EAPs)

 

Of course, whenever yeh make an exception to a rule, there are those that try to cheat, eh?   So da law creates incentives for businesses to try to classify people as white-collar salaried managers to avoid payin' 'em overtime.  It's unethical and obnoxious.  Fast food and retail "managers" who are really straw bosses are perhaps da ones treated worst by their conglomerates.

 

Da regulation sort of has three tests for an employee to be exempt.   They must be paid a fixed salary, they must have real EAP duties, and they must have a salary above a minimum threshold.

 

What happens in da real world is that while there are lots of unethical/illegal treatment of straw bosses as exempt employees based on their duties, that's one of those hard things to argue, eh?   Yeh have to sue the company, either individually or da Department of Labor has to.   So practically speakin' if yeh want folks to obey the law, it's easier to use the bright line of total salary rather than arguing about whether a fellow who "manages" two employees is really an administrator or executive.

 

Problem is that da salary bright line isn't indexed to inflation, eh?  If it were, then it would just go up gradually and yeh wouldn't have this sort of crazy jump to bring it back in line.   Actually, da Labor Department's jump this time is really a bit too small.  If it had been indexed to inflation all along it would be about $57K now, not $47K.    But when yeh let the thing languish for a long time, more and more people get away with cheatin'... and it takes a bigger correction to get things back.   Those corrections can hurt and get people upset, eh?

 

It's a good lesson that every hard $ amount in laws and regulations should be automatically inflation indexed if yeh want it to work right.

 

Beavah


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#14 Beavah

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:42 AM


This does not drive growth. This does not drive economic stability. It increases the cost to delivery a service (constant retraining and rehiring) and it devalues the role of the worker. This does the opposite of what the government says it wants to do.

 

Yah, hmmm...

 

Of course it doesn't drive growth or economic stability.  Not sure why it would, eh?  Growth is driven by population, productivity, and innovation.  Economic stability is driven by lots more than that. Yah, and of course growth and economic stability are opposite things, eh? :rolleyes:

 

Treatin' workers fairly does help with social stability, of course. Da McDonald's "manager" is still flippin' burgers and fillin' shake cups after all. 

 

Like I said, this is really just gettin' us back to da level we were at in previous decades, eh?  A bit less, actually.  It's an ordinary adjustment for inflation, not somethin' unusual or nefarious.  As such it shouldn't really affect scout councils if they've been livin' up to da Oath and Law right along. ;)

 

Beavah


Edited by Beavah, 19 May 2016 - 10:53 AM.

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#15 Sentinel947

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:52 AM

Aren't contractors also told when to work, etc? We use contractors all the time. We define the scope of the work, location, hours, etc. They come and go like employees.
 
I think @Sentinel947 was on camp staff. Maybe he knows how they are treated from a labor perspective. I think a few guys here were camp directors too, maybe they know?


We were treated as full time, seasonal staff. I think Summer camp staff is exempt as part of non profit seasonal business. I was a director and my total compensation pay+ food+ lodging barely cracked minimium wage.

This change has good intentions. Dunkin Donut managers shouldnt have to work 55-60 hours a week for 23k. But like any well meaning government policy, there are unintended consequences.

This DOL overtime wage, as well as minimium wage, should be indexed to inflation so it will stop being a political football.
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#16 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:53 AM

And that's precisely why the Govt pays 2-3x more than it should cost for a given result.

 

Well, now you are getting in to HOW the government prescribes stuff.

 

If they left it to their hired prime contractors and use their processes, it could get done cheaper and still work onsite like employees. All the legal and regulatory stuff, not to mention government reporting and tracking requirements, are what weight down the cost of service delivery.

 

Of course it doesn't drive growth or economic stability.  Not sure why it would, eh?  Growth is driven by population, productivity, and innovation.  Economic stability is driven by lots more than that. Yah, and of course growth and economic stability are opposite things, eh? :rolleyes:

 

Population does not drive growth. If that were true China and India would have not taken so long to reach their current state. 

 

You don't create growth and stability by creating lower paying or part time jobs UNLESS there are no jobs for those people to begin with. You end up under employing people which leads to more turn over in those positions. To compensate for higher turn over the company either needs to 1) raise wages (which means decreased profit or money to reinvest in the company), or 2) raise prices to recoup the costs of the increased wages. The other alternative -- which is often taken -- is to save money by splitting the one full time job with benefits in to two part-time jobs with no benefits. The company saves money but becomes less efficient. The money saved in avoiding higher salaries is used to compensate for the increased lack of quality or efficiency. That is hardly a recipe for helping business OR the worker.

 

Letting the market decide what salaries should be, rather than the government, has been the recipe for economic growth (as well as the growth of the worker) for quite a while. When government gets involved it rarely ever works.


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#17 Beavah

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 12:35 PM


Population does not drive growth.

 

Yah, I reckon yeh can choose to disagree with every economist in da known universe about a fundamental principle of macroeconomics, but odds are they're the ones who are right, eh? :rolleyes:

 

The market is still decidin' salaries and benefits, eh?  Not sure why yeh think otherwise.   There's no requirement for a full-time or salaried employee to get a benefits package, eh?   That's just market forces acting.  Same with the desire to avoid employee turnover in key positions by makin' 'em full time.   That's the market.  The law doesn't affect any of that.

 

All the law does is try to stop bad actors from exploitin' ordinary workers by pretending they're "executives".  

 

Right now we have high unemployment, eh?  More than that, we have a lot of hidden unemployment in da form of the long-term jobless.   We're also automating jobs away like mad.  I don't reckon that preventin' employers from callin' a fellow who makes $23K a year a no-overtime "executive" will send us off into da realm of an inflationary spiral anytime soon.  Da economic risk right now continues to be in the other direction.  :eek:

 

Beavah


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#18 Krampus

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 01:29 PM

Yah, I reckon yeh can choose to disagree with every economist in da known universe about a fundamental principle of macroeconomics, but odds are they're the ones who are right, eh? :rolleyes:

 
You can roll your eyes all you want, but population in and of itself does not drive growth. More people only means more people. People to feed and clothe and take care of. It does not equate to economic growth. And no reputable economist would advocate that more people automatically equates to growth of the economy.

 

Right now we have high unemployment, eh?  More than that, we have a lot of hidden unemployment in da form of the long-term jobless.   We're also automating jobs away like mad.  I don't reckon that preventin' employers from callin' a fellow who makes $23K a year a no-overtime "executive" will send us off into da realm of an inflationary spiral anytime soon.  Da economic risk right now continues to be in the other direction.  :eek:


First, what the heck are you talking about "high unemployment"? It is currently at 5% and that is just a tick above it's lowest under this administration.

 

Second, the jobs being created -- thanks to 8 years of over regulation and taxation by the government -- has caused a state of under employment.

 

Third, the "automating jobs away" is the free market being allowed to work. Just like the cotton gin, the automating of certain services makes some goods/services cheaper. Industry needs to adapt and reinvest but that cannot happen when they have to worry about too many regulations and taxes.

 

Lastly, if businesses are forced to pay overtime, where do you think they will get the money to pay those workers? They will have to take it from somewhere, Beavah. It is not like they can just print the money. They will have to take money away from investment in council camps, support programs or other areas to pay the overtime of those workers. OR they need to increase profits in order to cover those cost increases. This may mean increased prices for goods and services passed on to the consumer.

 

So if you think companies having to pay overtime isn't going to have a substantial economic impact, then I am sorry to say you have a very simplistic view of macro and micro economics.

 

Where do YOU think that money will come from? How will companies pay that overtime?


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#19 blw2

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 01:50 PM

yeah, seems to me to be much the same train wreck of an idea as minimum wage....

I figure it boils down to an increase in dues/costs AND/OR a reduction in services.  a loose/loose form my perspective....

 

On the other hand, I have long been troubled with the question.... so just where did this magic "40" hour work week number come from anyway?  ditto the "5" day work week?  

These numbers seem rather arbitrary, and in my thinking I'd much rather work a little less to have a little bit more time for what really matters in life....

So this new thing anyway just seems to be throwing in more seemingly arbitrary numbers into the mix....


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#20 Fehler

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 02:08 PM

Not really arbitrary, as stated, its what the overtime cutoff would be if it had been indexed to inflation when first created. 


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