Vision Payroll

October 9, 2011

Washington Minimum Wage to Increase to $9.04 January 1, 2012

Judy Schurke, Director, Washington State Department of Labor & Industries
Judy Schurke, Director, Washington State Department of Labor & Industries
The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries announced recently that pursuant to Initiative 688, the minimum wage for the state of Washington would increase from $8.67 to $9.04 per hour effective January 1, 2012. The law requires an adjustment to the minimum wage be calculated each year.

Adjustment Is Tied to Changes in CPI-W

The adjustment is tied to the change in the federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) for the 12 months ending in August. The 4.258% increase in the CPI-W will result in an increase of $0.37 for 2011.

Washington Maintains Highest Minimum Wage in the Country

Washington has the highest minimum wage in the country, followed by Oregon. Oregon recently announced that its minimum wage would rise $0.30 to $8.80 an hour in 2012.

Find Out the Minimum Wage for All States by Visiting the Vision Payroll Minimum Wage Chart Page

Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Washington minimum wage increase or visit our Minimum Wage Chart.

October 4, 2011

Oregon Minimum Wages Increases to $8.80 for 2012

Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, announced recently that, effective January 1, 2012, the minimum wage for the state of Oregon will increase to $8.80 per hour.

Measure 25 Mandates Annual Adjustments

As a result of Measure 25, which passed in 2002, an adjustment to the minimum wage must be calculated no later than September 30 of each year. The adjustment is based on any increase in the US City Average Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for All Items (CPI). The 3.37% increase in the CPI will result in a comparable change in the minimum wage.

Find Out the Minimum Wage for All States by Visiting the Vision Payroll Minimum Wage Chart Page

Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon minimum wage or visit our Minimum Wage Chart.

July 10, 2011

Farmers Insurance Agrees to Pay $1.5 Million in Back Wages

Farmers Insurance Agrees to Pay $1.5 Million in Back Wages
Farmers Insurance Agrees to Pay $1.5 Million in Back Wages
Los Angeles-based Farmers Insurance Inc. (Farmers) has agreed to pay $1,520,705 in overtime back wages to 3,459 employees following an investigation by the US Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division that disclosed significant and systemic violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) overtime and record-keeping provisions. Violations occurred at 11 customer service call centers located in Florida, Kansas, Michigan, Oklahoma, Oregon and Texas.

Pre-Shift and Post-Shift Work Must Be Compensated

“Failing to properly compensate employees for pre- or post-shift work is a violation of federal law,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “The Labor Department is committed to ensuring that employers abide by the law so that workers are protected against exploitation, and law-abiding employers are not placed at a competitive disadvantage.”

Farmers Did Not Pay for Pre-Shift Work

Through interviews with employees and a review of the company’s timekeeping and payroll systems, investigators found that the company did not account for time employees spent performing pre-shift work activities. Employees routinely performed an average of thirty minutes of unrecorded and uncompensated work — such as turning on work stations, logging into the company phone system and initiating certain software applications necessary to begin their call center duties — per week.

Farmers Agrees to Maintain Future Compliance with FLSA

Because employees’ pre-shift work times were excluded from official time and payroll records, they were not paid for all hours and are owed compensation at time and one-half their regular rates for hours that exceeded forty per week. Farmers Insurance has agreed to pay back wages, as well as to maintain future compliance with the FLSA by properly recording and compensating all hours worked by its employees.

Call Center Employees Across the Country Are Affected

The agreement affects call center employees who worked between Jan. 1, 2009, and May 10, 2010, at Farmers’ HelpPoint facilities in Olathe, Kansas; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Lake Mary, Florida; and Grand Rapids, Michigan. It also affects workers employed at a former location in Overland Park, Kansas, between Jan. 1, 2009, and Jan. 10, 2010. Additionally, it affects employees who worked between Jan. 1, 2009, and Feb. 1, 2010, at Farmers’ ServicePoint and commercial facilities in Austin, Texas; a ServicePoint facility in Grand Rapids, Michigan; a ServicePoint facility in Olathe, Kansas; and ServicePoint and commercial facilities in Hillsboro, Oregon.

FLSA Also Requires Overtime for Hours Worked in Excess of 40

The FLSA requires that covered employees be paid for pre-shift and post-shift job duties, and for attending required meetings. Employees must be paid time and one-half their regular rates, including commissions, bonuses and incentive pay, for hours worked beyond forty per week. Employers must pay at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 for all hours worked, and maintain accurate time and payroll records.

November 27, 2010

Oregon Unemployment Wage Base to Increase to $32,300 for 2011

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 5:16 pm
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
The Oregon Employment Department has announced an increase in the taxable wage base for 2011. The wage base will increase from $32,100 for 2010 to $32,300 for 2011.

Find Out the Wage Base for All States by Visiting the Vision Payroll Unemployment Taxable Wage Base Page

Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon unemployment taxable wage base or visit our Unemployment Taxable Wage Base page.

September 25, 2010

Oregon Minimum Wages Increases to $8.50 for 2011

Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, announced recently that, effective January 1, 2011, the minimum wage for the state of Oregon will increase to $8.50 per hour.

Measure 25 Mandates Annual Adjustments

As a result of Measure 25, which passed in 2002, an adjustment to the minimum wage must be calculated no later than September 30 of each year. The adjustment is based on any increase in the US City Average Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for All Items (CPI). The 1.15% increase in the CPI will result in a comparable change in the minimum wage.

Find Out the Minimum Wage for All States by Visiting the Vision Payroll Minimum Wage Chart Page

Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon minimum wage or visit our Minimum Wage Chart.

March 16, 2010

Oregon Updates 2010 Withholding Requirements for Measure 66

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 1:55 pm

The Oregon Department of Revenue has completed its analysis of the changes required by the passage of Measure 66. For employees with wages less than $125,000, the Oregon Withholding Tax Tables dated January 1, 2007 remain in effect. For employees with wages of $125,000 or more, payroll withholding calculators have been created to modify the withholding calculation. Alternatively, employers may request the employees modify their withholding by filing a revised Form W-4 after completing the Oregon personal allowances worksheet (W-4). New tables will be available for the 2011 tax year. Vision Payroll has modified its withholding calculations for Oregon employees and no further action is required. Contact Vision Payroll if you have further questions.

December 8, 2009

Oregon Unemployment Wage Base to Increase to $32,100

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , — Vision @ 10:26 am

The Oregon Employment Department has announced an increase in the taxable wage base for 2010. The wage base will increase from $31,300 for 2009 to $32,100 for 2010. Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon unemployment taxable wage base or visit our Unemployment Taxable Wage Base page.

October 24, 2009

Oregon Minimum Wage to Remain Unchanged for 2010

Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries announced recently that, effective January 1, 2010, the minimum wage for the state of Oregon will remain at $8.40 per hour. As a result of Measure 25, which passed in 2002, an adjustment to the minimum wage must be calculated no later than September 30 of each year. The adjustment is based on any increase in the US City Average Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for All Items (CPI). The 1.48% decrease in the CPI will result in no change since there is no provision to decrease the minimum wage. Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon minimum wage or visit our Minimum Wage Chart.

September 23, 2008

Oregon Minimum Wage to Increase January 1, 2009

Brad Avakian, Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries announced recently that, effective January 1, 2009, the minimum wage for the state of Oregon will increase to $8.40 per hour. As a result of Measure 25, which passed in 2002, an adjustment to the minimum wage must be calculated no later than September 30 of each year. The adjustment is based on any increase in the US City Average Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for All Items (CPI). The 5.37% increase in the CPI will result in an increase of $0.45 for 2009. Contact Vision Payroll if you have any questions on the Oregon minimum wage increase or visit our Minimum Wage Chart.

September 9, 2008

Oregon Supreme Court Rules Directors’ Fees Not Subject to State Unemployment Tax

The Oregon Supreme Court recently ruled in Necanicum Investment Co. v. Employment Department, SC S055231, July 24, 2008, that directors’ fees paid to a company’s board of directors are not wages for unemployment tax purposes, since the “directors are not ‘employed by’ the corporation in the same sense as other persons who perform ‘service for an employer * * * for remuneration.’” The court noted that under Oregon law, shareholders elect the directors and “there is no employer-employee relationship between a corporation and its directors when the directors are performing the duties imposed on them by statute.” Since no employment relationship exists, payments to directors could not be considered wages for this purpose.

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