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Rebecca Springer joined Crowell & Moring in 1999 and currently serves as counsel. Her practice focuses on labor and employment litigation and counseling, particularly in the area of Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs ("OFCCP") compliance. Rebecca has extensive experience conducting audits of personnel practices, preparing Affirmative Action Plans, and counseling clients on affirmative action issues. She also has experience conducting statistical analyses of compensation practices for purposes of class action litigation, OFCCP compliance audits, and employer self-audits.

Please join us on Wednesday, June 10, 2015, from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m., as Crowell & Moring presents the webinar, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Proposed Rule and Guidance: What You Need to Know.”

On May 28, 2015, the Obama Administration published the highly-anticipated proposed FAR rule and proposed DOL guidance implementing the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order (EO).  The proposed rule and guidance trigger a 60-day public comment period and provide details as to the onerous compliance and reporting burdens that contractors and subcontractors will face after final rulemaking. Implementing what is often referred to as the “Blacklisting” EO, the new rule and guidance – if implemented – will inject subjectivity into the contract award process, as “Agency Labor Compliance Advisors” make recommendations to contracting officers with respect to responsibility determinations, based on new and ambiguous standards set forth in the proposed guidance.

A panel of Crowell & Moring attorneys with experience in government contracts and employment law will discuss key elements of the proposed rule and guidance, including:

  • The applicability and implementation of “Fair Pay Safe Workplaces”
  • The “labor law violation” disclosure process
  • Analysis of the rule’s effect upon responsibility determination
  • The three categories of violations that can trigger a negative responsibility finding, including “administrative merits determinations” that are reached before a hearing on the merits

We hope you can join us as we discuss these issues and more during next week’s webinar.

On May 28, 2015, the Obama Administration published the highly-anticipated Proposed Rule and Proposed Guidance implementing the “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” Executive Order, (E.O.) which President Obama issued on July 31, 2014. The proposed rule adds a new subpart to the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) – subpart 22.20 “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” – which “incorporate[s]” proposed guidance issued by the Department of Labor (DOL) titled “Guidance for Executive Order 13673, ‘Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces.’ ” (“Proposed Guidance”). These regulations will not take effect until the final rule and final guidance are issued, but the proposed rule and guidance trigger a 60-day period to comment on the proposed rule and guidance, and offer insight into the onerous compliance and reporting burdens that contractors and subcontractors will face under the Proposed Rule. Below is a summary of several key provisions.

Continue Reading Obama Administration Issues Proposed Rule and Guidance for Implementing “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces”

Here they go again. Undeterred by the failure of the EO Survey five years ago, on August 10, 2011, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“ANPRM”) soliciting public feedback on development of a new compensation data collection tool.  According to the ANPRM, this data collection is intended to identify “potential problems of compensation discrimination . . . that warrant further review or evaluation by OFCCP . . . as well as to identify and analyze industry trends, Federal contractors’ compensation practices, and potential equal employment related issues.” This latest initiative is consistent with OFCCP’s long-standing focus on compensation issues, and is illustrative of the Agency’s recent aggressive efforts to significantly augment its investigative “toolbox” and broaden the obligations imposed on federal contractors and subcontractors. 

The ANPRM seeks input on a series of fifteen questions that address the types of data to be collected, the manner in which such data would be organized, and the intended uses of the data. The fifteen questions  indicate the OFCCP is considering the following:

  • Collecting data used on a very broad definition of compensation, which could include starting salary, current salary, bonuses, commissions, stock options, shift differentials, paid leave, and health and retirement benefits.
  • Collecting the data on an individualized basis or aggregated by salary grade or band, EEO-1 categories, job groups, or census occupational codes.
  • Using the tool to target specific industries for “industry-focused compensation reviews.”
  • Using the data to conduct nationwide reviews of a contractor’s compensation system, across multiple establishments.
  • Requiring businesses to submit compensation data as part of the initial bidding process for future government contracts to enable OFCCP to better “target[] contractors for post-award compliance”.
  • Expanding the scope of this data collection tool to include construction contractors as well as service and supply contractors.

While it is too early to predict the precise scope and structure of the compensation data collection tool the OFCCP will ultimately adopt, the one sure bet is that this initiative will have a significant impact on the affirmative action reporting obligations of all federal contractors and subcontractors.  We will keep you updated as the OFCCP continues to develop this tool.