Georgia Firefighters Upset Over Mandatory Overtime

A group of current and former firefighters in Gwinnett County, Georgia, have begun a grassroots campaign attempting to raise community awareness about mandatory overtime. The group, which is led by a retired firefighter claims excessive overtime in the Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services Department is costing the county millions of dollars while jeopardizing the safety of both firefighters and ...

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Conferences, Classes, and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA Question I am a fire chief of a small combination department. Two of my officers want to attend the FDIC (Fire Department Instructors Conference) this year in Indianapolis. It is a great conference—I wish I could join them. I am more than happy to sponsor them, pay any fees associated with attendance, and give them time off to ...

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Pay parity effort between New York City EMTs and FDNY results in new lawsuit

This past week two unions that represent New York City EMS workers and fire inspectors filed a lawsuit against the city. The suit accuses the city of refusing to release documents related to the race, gender, rank, and disciplinary history of both FDNY and other city workers. The union is seeking this information in an effort to illustrate EMS workers ...

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Repayment of Training Costs and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA question. . . Same question. . . Two sides. . . I am a rookie firefighter. I just completed recruit school last week. I was paid minimum wage for 14-weeks while in the academy. I am set to begin on my first shift tomorrow. I don’t think this was a good choice for me and I just found ...

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New Labor Contract Provision Increases Overtime for Hawaii Fire Department

The Department of Fire and Public Safety in Maui County, Hawaii, has seen a dramatic increase in overtime following a recent change to the collective bargaining agreement between the county and firefighters. The county’s internal auditor has a plan to potentially reduce overtime, but the fire chief does not seem to concur with the auditor’s recommendation. Maui County Fire Department’s ...

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MI Firefighters Sue for Pay Raise Due in 2016

On October 26th, firefighters in Allen Park Michigan filed a lawsuit against the City of Allen Park alleging the city has not honored the labor contract between the City of Allen Park and the Allen Park Professional Firefighters Association (IAFF Local 1410). The 2013-2016 collective bargaining agreement between the city and firefighters contained a 2.5% wage increase due in 2016. ...

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$3.5 Million Reasons why Fee-Laden Debit Cards are NOT the Best Idea for Payroll

Warning!! Not Firefighter Related . . . But interesting story from Pennsylvania today . . . Ever think about paying your workers with “fee-laden debit cards?” Just as an FYI, it is probably not the best idea. A Pennsylvania judge recently approved a class action settlement between almost 2,400 former and current McDonald’s employees that were paid with “fee-laden debit ...

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Reduction in Firefighters Equals Increase in OT for Richmond VA Fire

The Richmond Virginia Fire Department is short twenty-four firefighters. This shortage has created a drastic increase in the department’s overtime budget. According to Fire Chief Melvin Carter between $85,000 and $135,000 is spent on overtime every two weeks. Even Keith Andes, President of the Richmond Firefighters Association, agrees that spending that much on overtime is “unsustainable.” The department has already ...

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Update on IAFF – FLSA Lawsuit

This past July the Spokane Valley Fire Department (SVFD) filed an unusual lawsuit against the union that represents Spokane Valley firefighters (IAFF Local 3701). SVFD wanted the court to issue a “declaratory judgement” that SVFD battalion chiefs and fire marshals were exempt from receiving FLSA overtime. A declaratory judgement is when a court is asked to issue a formal opinion ...

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Court of Appeals Upholds Paid Breaks for Workers

On October 13th, the 3rd Circuit Federal Court of Appeals upheld a lower federal court decision that required an employer pay employees for short breaks. The FLSA has long mandated breaks less than 20 minutes be paid, however this employer made a rather unique argument that may just be worth a closer look. Progressive Business Publications (Progressive) employed hourly telephone ...

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