Listen to me on KTRS/St. Louis every Friday, 3-6pm CT

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Working Overtime

The House voted today to allow employers to give employees an option on how they're paid for working overtime -- money or comp time. Three problems arise from the notion that they're the same.

First is that you can't pay your rent with time. Your landlord won't accept 16 hours away from work in exchange for another month in your apartment.

Second is that the question of when you can use your comp time will still be at the discretion of your boss, so it's not like you can just take off a few hours or a day whenever you want to.

Third is that employers might begin giving preferential treatment to those who accept comp time in lieu of financial compensation, and thus assign overtime to employees who will cost less. That creates a coercive environment, so what was presented as an option originally becomes no option at all, but rather a disincentive for you to take the money and run.