Overtime or comp time? New bill heads to Senate - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Overtime or comp time? New bill heads to Senate

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

If you had to work extra hours, would you prefer time and a half pay, or a comp day from your boss?

A new bill from Alabama Representative Martha Roby would open those options to all workers.  The bill passed the House Tuesday night, along mostly partisan lines. Six Republicans crossed party lines to vote “no”. All 191 Democrats also voted against the bill.

Republicans say the bill will give workers and employers more flexibility in controlling costs and having time off. Democrats say the bill undermines labor laws and will cheat workers out of money they’ve earned.

We took your questions to Congresswoman Roby in a live interview Wednesday morning.

“It’s completely voluntary,” Roby told WAFF 48. “What this bill does is it gives hardworking moms and dads flexibility to determine whether or not they value paid time off, or if they want the cash payments for overtime.” Rep. Roby says she included protections in the bill that would let the employee change their mind and cash out at any time, and forces the employer to honor that wish within 30 days.

However, opponents worry this will undermine workers and have employers to give preferential treatment to employees who’d rather have compensatory time instead of overtime pay. Democratic Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland says the bill "effectively devalues what workers can earn for the extra hours they work."  

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