July 17, 2017
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Des Moines, IA – Iowa state officials have reclassified more than 160 job titles to avoid paying overtime to about 2,800 workers.
A spokesperson for the state Department of Human Services told Radio Iowa that the state’s collective bargaining agreement had expired on June 30, and it was only through that contract that the workers got paid for overtime. Gov. Kim Reynolds told reporters July 10 that the change gives the heads of state agencies “the opportunity to manage their resources and manage their departments.” The workers being denied overtime pay include nurses, safety inspectors, social workers, income maintenance workers, and those in various patient-care positions. AFSCME Council 61 called it a “below-the-belt move” and part of “dismantling collective bargaining in Iowa for public employees.” “Mandatory overtime is one thing. Mandatory UNPAID overtime is another,” Allison Ritchie, president of Local 3011 in Davenport, said in a message posted online with a petition urging Gov. Reynolds to restore the workers’ eligibility for overtime pay. Read more
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