Higher Education

Revised EEO-1 Pay Reporting Requirements Suspended Until Further Review

September 11, 2017

By Alyssa N. Campbell

On August 29, 2017, the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) suspended the implementation of the new EEO-1 form, pending a review of the effectiveness of those aspects of the EEO-1 form that were revised on September 29, 2016.  The revisions to the EEO-1 form, which were scheduled to take effect in March 2018, included:

  • A modification of the “snapshot” data collection period for reporting to October 1 through December 31;
  • A requirement that employers who have a reporting obligation (employers with 100 or more employees and federal contractors with 50 or more employees) submit detailed information on compensation and hours worked; and
  • A change in the EEO-1 filing deadline for 2017 to March 31, 2018.

In the memorandum issued by OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (“OIRA”) to the Acting Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) regarding the suspension of the new wage data reporting requirements, OIRA stated that it was “initiating a review and immediate stay of the effectiveness of the new aspects of the EEO-1 form.”  OIRA provided three reasons for its decision:

  1. After OMB approved the revised EEO-1 form in September of 2016, the EEOC released data file specifications for employers to use when submitting EEO-1 data, which were not contained in the Federal Register notices as part of the public comment process or outlined in the supporting statement for the collection of information, so the public was denied an opportunity to comment on the method of data submission to the EEOC;
  2. The EEOC’s estimates of the burden the new form would place on employers did not account for the use of the newly released data file specifications, which may have changed the initial burden estimates; and
  3. Some aspects of the revised collection of information are contrary to the standards of the Paperwork Reduction Act, lack practical utility, are unnecessarily burdensome, and do not adequately address privacy and confidentiality issues.

In response to OIRA’s memorandum, the EEOC announced that employers should plan to file the earlier approved version of the EEO-1 form, without the compensation and hours worked data, by the filing date of March 31, 2018.  Employers should still use the new “snapshot” period of October 1 through December 31, 2017, for the submission of the 2017 EEO-1 form.

Paid Family Leave: Week 4 of Q&As

August 25, 2017

By Kerry W. Langan and Caroline M. Westover

The Q&As for this week focus on the application of PFL to higher education institutions.

Question:  Are private colleges and universities covered by PFL?

Answer:  Yes.  Private colleges and universities are deemed to be covered employers under PFL.  However, if these colleges and universities are not-for-profit organizations, they may be deemed to be covered employers, but may also have some employees who are not covered by PFL.  Specifically, employees engaged in a “professional” or teaching capacity for not-for-profit educational institutions are excluded from the definition of employee under the law.  Certainly, higher education institutions can extend coverage to these exempt classes of individuals if they choose to do so.

Question:  Are state colleges and universities covered by PFL?

AnswerNo, to the extent that such institutions fall within the definition of a “public employer.”  PFL does not apply to public employers, which includes the following entities:  the state, a political subdivision of the state, a public authority, or any other governmental agency or instrumentality.

Question:  Can state colleges and universities voluntarily choose to provide benefits under the PFL law?

Answer:  Yes.  Public employers are permitted to opt in to PFL.  The process for opting in is slightly different for unionized and non-unionized employers.  If a public employer chooses to cover its non-unionized workers, it must provide 90 days’ advance notice of its decision to opt in to not only the WCB, but to all employees who will be required to make PFL contributions.  In order for a public employer to cover/opt in its unionized employees, the public employer must engage in collective bargaining and reach consensus/agreement with the applicable union.  Once an agreement is reached, the employer must notify the WCB that an agreement has been reached and provide certain information to the WCB.

Question:  Are higher education institutions who currently provide voluntary state disability insurance coverage (DBL) to their employees also required to provide PFL?

Answer:  No.  However, if these higher education institutions currently provide voluntary DBL coverage to their employees, they must notify both the employees and the WCB whether they will also provide voluntarily PFL coverage.  Notification must be made by no later than December 1, 2017.

Question:  Are student employees entitled to PFL?

Answer:  Yes, provided they satisfy the requisite eligibility criteria.  Student employees are treated in the same manner as any other employee.  If the student employee is regularly scheduled to work at least 20 hours per week, he/she is eligible to take PFL after he/she has been employed for 26 weeks.  If the student employee is regularly scheduled to work less than 20 hours per week, he/she is eligible to take PFL after working 175 days.

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For more information and updates on PFL, please continue to visit our blog.

If you have any questions about PFL, please contact the authors of this post, any of the attorneys in our Labor and Employment Law Practice, or the Bond attorney with whom you regularly work.