Having worked both hourly jobs and salaried jobs, I can tell you that there are pros and cons to both.

With hourly jobs, you get paid for every minute you dedicate to work, and never have to take work home with you.  However, depending on how many hours you end up working, your paycheck can fluctuate greatly.

With exempt salaried positions, you always know how much you are going to be making, but the day is often based on tasks that must be completed.  So if a big project comes along, you may end up working more than your typical eight hours with no additional compensation.  On top of that, there is a greater chance that you will end up ‘taking work home’ at a salaried position.

A new bill before the Maine Legislature could lead the way for some salaried workers to bring home more in their paychecks when they work more than 40 hours per week.

According to WCSH 6, the bill, proposed by Senator Mike Tipping is called "An Act Regarding Overtime Protections for Certain Maine Workers"

If it becomes a law, it would increase the exemption threshold.  Anyone below the exemption threshold would be eligible to get overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours per week.

Currently, the threshold to be considered an exempt employee is $42,000 per year.  The new law would increase that to $55,000 in January 2025.  To keep pace with inflation, the exemption level would be adjusted annually in January.

The article explains that only about 11% of salaried American workers are below the threshold.

Many people in favor of the bill feel it is something that should have been done a long time ago.

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash
Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

However, the owners of many small businesses are against the idea.  This is especially true for seasonal businesses, where the manpower needs change dramatically throughout the year.  This could lead to some of these businesses making the difficult decision to employ fewer salaried workers. Instead, they would rely on hourly workers.

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