Department of Labor Proposed Regulatory Agenda for 2010

January 18, 2010

On December 7, 2009, the U.S. Department of Labor announced its regulatory agenda for 2010. Some of the more significant initiatives are described below:

Child Labor Regulations

The DOL is considering possible revisions to the hazardous occupations orders to address recommendations from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in its May 2002 report. Target date: April 2010

Recordkeeping Under the Fair Labor Standards Act

DOL proposes to update the recordkeeping regulations under the FLSA to disclose to workers how their pay is computed. Employers would be required to report hours worked in the pay period, how pay has been calculated (including overtime), and what deductions have been made. The current federal recordkeeping rules require employers to keep payroll records, but do not require that the information be shared with employees each payday. Target date: August 2010

Family and Medical Leave Act

The Department of Labor continues to review implementation of the new military family leave amendments to FMLA included in the National Defense Authorization Act for 2008 and other revisions to of the current regulations. Target date: November 2010.

Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act "Advice" Exemption

The Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) intends to propose regulations to "better implement the public disclosure objectives" of section 203 of the Act, pertaining to employer-consultant agreements. Current exceptions to the reporting requirements of the Act in section 203(c) provide, in part, that employer and consulting reporting is not required concerning any agreement or arrangement to provide "advice" to the employer. The Department believes that the advice exception is "over-broad and excludes information that should be reported." Due to the impact on a diverse group of stakeholders (employers, consultants, labor unions, etc.), the Department will publish a notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment on any proposed rulemaking. Target date: November 2010

Executive Order 13495 Service Contracts

This Executive Order of January 2009 Non-Displacement of Qualified Workers Under Service Contract, establishes the policy that Federal service contracts include a clause requiring the contractor and its subcontractors, under a contract that succeeds a contract for the same or similar service at the same location, to offer qualified employees (except managerial and supervisory personnel) employed on the predecessor contract a right of first refusal to employment under the successor contract. The order assigned enforcement responsibility to the Secretary of Labor and directed the Secretary to issue regulations to implement the order. Target date: December 2009

DOL Hires Additional Staff

The DOL has hired an additional 250 wage and hour investigators (a staff increase of more than one third) to ensure prompt response to complaints and more targeted enforcement. Also, in early 2010, the department will launch a national public awareness campaign titled "We Can Help" to inform workers of their rights. The department will "work closely with advocacy groups and other stakeholders to ensure that the materials developed for the campaign reach the workers who need them."