In a decision that could have wide-ranging implications, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that helicopter pilots for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey are not “professional employees” under the Fair Labor Standards Act and are therefore entitled to mandatory overtime pay. The ruling re-affirmed a lower court’s decision that the pilots are “highly trained technicians” and not professional employees.
Are the new Department of Labor (DOL) “Fair Pay Rules,” which became effective August 23 and changed the overtime pay rules for workers earning less than $23,660 per year, or $455 per week, in danger of extinction? By a vote of 223 to 193 last month, the House tacked an amendment on to the $142.5 billion measure funding education, worker training and health programs that would block the DOL rules.