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Update: Change to federal regulations and potential impact on employees

Today, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued changes to the overtime rules under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Based on what we know at this time from the Department of Labor, the revisions will:

  • Raise the salary threshold indicating eligibility from $455/week to $913 ($47,476 per year).
  • Automatically update the salary threshold every three years, based on wage growth over time.
  • Become effective on Dec. 1, 2016, allowing us time to review the final regulations, understand them and finalize our implementation plans.

As communicated two weeks ago, Human Resources has been in the process of reviewing all positions in our university and health system to determine which employees may be affected. Now that we know the final salary threshold ($47,476), we can complete this process.

We will continue working closely with senior leaders (deans and vice presidents) who supervise those employees who will be affected by the change in regulations to determine the most appropriate, most equitable and least disruptive implementation process. It appears that the final regulations contain some of the feedback provided by organizations such as the College and University Professional Organization for Human Resources (CUPA-HR), which represents over 1,900 colleges and universities, and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM); thus, we will need to study the final regulations to fully understand the impact for Augusta University and AU Health. Therefore, we will plan to hold Town Hall meetings (one on the Summerville Campus and one on the Health Sciences Campus) the week of May 31 to share what we know at that time. Given that the effective date will be Dec. 1, we expect that these will be the first in a series of meetings as we all work together to understand and comply with these new regulations.

We understand potentially affected employees will have questions and concerns, and we are committed to being as prepared as possible to take action on the new regulations in order to keep uncertainty and speculation to a minimum. Employees who are converted to non-exempt status — and their managers — will need to be informed and trained on how the change affects pay schedules, timekeeping, leave policies and more.

We will provide more information as we have it. After we communicate these impending changes directly to employees, all related information will be posted to as it develops, so please encourage your employees to check it regularly. Once we have finalized implementation plans that comply with the regulations, affected employees and their managers will be contacted directly.

Susan A. Norton
Enterprise VP for Human Resources

Click here for the University System of Georgia memo regarding the changes. 

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