A resolution meant to “undo” a portion of the minimum wage law that voters overwhelmingly passed last November is on a fast track for approval by the Senate. Members of a Senate committee have sent a resolution dealing with a perceived flaw in the law’s overtime requirements to the full Senate. As the law stands, committee members say it’s unclear whether first responders and emergency officials, such as firefighters and police officers, are now eligible for overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours a week. Local governments say if they are included wage costs for first responders would spike and could cost local taxpayers up to $9 million in additional costs. Or, they say it’s more likely the number of first responders would be drastically reduced. They say that’s because firefighters and police officers often work 24-hour shifts. Sen John Loudon, chairman of the committee, says this proposal seeks to resolve “an unintended consequence” of the minimum wage law and seeks to resolve it immediately. Some local governments and state agencies have already filed a lawsuit against the state to combat the newly instated overtime pay requirements. The approved resolution also includes an amendment calling for a joint-committee to complete a comprehensive study on how, exactly, the minimum wage law affects Missourians in various sectors.
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