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Regulatory Developments

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Last week, SHRM and the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) sent a letter to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) expressing serious concerns about proposed changes in federal affirmative action enforcement.

In May, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) proposed changes to the compliance review scheduling letter. It’s used by the agency to initiate compliance evaluations of federal contractors’ non-discrimination and affirmative action plans.

The changes would mean the collection of more employer-specific data. Specifically, information on employer leave policies, including sick, personal, pregnancy, FMLA and religious leave. Plus, the agency would seek information on personnel activity within five or seven racial and ethnic categories, up from the current two, and by both job group and job title, instead of just one. 

Finally, compensation information would be reported by individual employee, not in an aggregated format, and would be required for an expanded group, including contract, per-diem and day laborers.

Despite filed comments that are 70-percent in opposition to the proposed changes, the OFCCP made only a handful of minor changes before submitting the proposal to OMB for final clearance. 

The SHRM/CUPA-HR letter argued that the proposal violates the Paperwork Reduction Act (enforced by OMB) by grossly underestimating the burden this will create for federal contractors. The scheduling letter is just one part of the agency’s multi-faceted compliance evaluation process. SHRM questions whether such an extensive information collection requirement is needed during the very first stage of that process.

SHRM and CUPA-HR urged the OMB to ensure that legitimate information is collected in the least burdensome way possible.

The joint letter is available HERE.

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