HJR97-1005 By Representative Owen; also Senator Rizzuto--Concerning the reform of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

WHEREAS, The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was enacted in 1938 and is still vigorously enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division, with little flexibility for the changing demographics of the modern workplace; and

WHEREAS, Government entities at all levels have passed additional labor and employment laws, such as the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which contain provisions compromising the steadfast rules under the FLSA (for example, if a salaried employee's pay is docked for a partial day's leave under the FMLA, it may compromise the employee's exempt status with respect to the FLSA); and

WHEREAS, Employers should be given the option of offering employees "flex" time, whereby overtime would be determined as anything in excess of an average of forty hours per week instead of eight hours per day; and

WHEREAS, An employee's "regular rate" for purposes of calculating overtime premiums should be the employee's base salary or wage to avoid the difficulty of calculating additional payments such as performance bonuses, shift differentials, or in­kind payments; and

WHEREAS, Private employers should be given the option of offering employees compensatory time instead of overtime pay for overtime worked, an option that public employers already possess; and

WHEREAS, The first and last trip of each day that is within the geographic territory normally covered by an employee who drives a company­owned vehicle should not be compensable absent a contrary agreement between the employee and employer; and

WHEREAS, An employer should not be required to reimburse employees for travel or relocation expenses in order to meet an employer's minimum wage obligation; and

WHEREAS, An individual should be considered a volunteer and not an employee of an entity, regardless of its nature, if the individual agrees to perform the work without pay for the entity, in the absence of a promise of employment by the entity; and

WHEREAS, Time spent in voluntary training provided by the employer outside of regular working hours should not be counted as hours worked; and

WHEREAS, The U.S. Department of Labor should be prohibited from seeking back pay on legal theories not yet established in the courts; and

WHEREAS, U.S. Department of Labor opinions or interpretations that do not go through the proper regulatory process should have no force of law except to continue to provide a defense under the Portal­to­Portal Act for employers who acted in good faith reliance on a U.S. Department of Labor opinion or interpretation; and

WHEREAS, The current definition of "employ" prohibits self­initiation by hourly workers who wish to put forth extra effort in furtherance of their own skills and careers by, for example, performing preparatory activities like arriving at their work station early, getting their tools lined up for the day's work, or reviewing the day's schedule in anticipation of their normal duties; and

WHEREAS, Employers should be able to provide supplemental compensation to salaried exempt employees for working in excess of forty hours per week without losing the exempt status of such employees or otherwise violating the "salary basis" test of such classification; now, therefore,

Be It Resolved by the House of Representatives of the Sixty­first General Assembly of the State of Colorado, the Senate concurring herein:

That the State of Colorado urges the United States Congress to reform the Fair Labor Standards Act to meet the demands of the modern workplace.

Be it further resolved, That copies of this Joint Resolution be sent to every member of the United States Congress urging them to support the reform of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Committee on Business Affairs.