Roby to Highlight Areas of Common Ground in National GOP Address
Despite significant disagreement over fundamental issues between Republicans and Democrats in Washington, U.S. Representative Martha Roby (R-AL) will discuss specific areas of common ground on which the two sides should be able to agree in the Weekly Republican Address to the nation.
Rep. Roby will join fellow House leaders Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN), Rep. Gregg Harper (R-MS), and Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), chairman of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, in delivering this week's address. Each Member will discuss specific bi-partisan solutions designed to create jobs, expand opportunity, and make life work better for more Americans.
"People are tired of the endless political rhetoric from Washington," Rep. Roby said. "Americans want leaders who will be real with them and talk about ways to fix the problems they are facing. I'm proud to join my fellow Republicans to discuss policy ideas on which both sides should be able to agree."
This marks Rep. Roby's fourth time to appear in the Weekly Republican Address, with previous appearances in May 2011, February 2013, and May 2013.
This week House leaders sent a letter to President Obama outlining House-passed bills that address certain goals promoted in his State of the Union Address. Among those goals was reforming outdated workplace rules to offer working parents more time flexibility to take care of family responsibilities.
In his speech, President Obama said, "A mother deserves a day off to care for a sick child or sick parent without running into hardship – and you know what, a father does, too. It’s time to do away with workplace policies that belong in a ‘Mad Men’ episode."
In May, the House passed Rep. Roby's "Working Families Flexibility Act," which allows the commonly-used government employee benefit of "comp time" to be utilized in the private sector. The bill, H.R. 1406, amends the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to allow private sector employers to offer their employees the choice of paid time off, or “comp time,” in lieu of cash wages for overtime. Congress amended the law to allow “comp time” for government workers in 1985, but the benefit is still prohibited in the private sector.
A working mom or dad could use the “time and a half” overtime he or she earned as actual paid “time and a half” off work instead of cash, if that’s what they’d rather have. Under Rep. Roby's bill, no worker could ever be forced to take paid time off, just like no business owner would be forced to offer it.
The bill does not change the 40-hour workweek or how overtime pay is calculated. The same protections that have been a part of labor law for decades remain.