H.R. 2617, To amend the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 to postpone a scheduled increase in the minimum wage applicable to American Samoa, as amended

H.R. 2617

To amend the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 to postpone a scheduled increase in the minimum wage applicable to American Samoa, as amended

Date
September 28, 2015 (114th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Monday, September 28, 2015, the House will consider H.R. 2617, a bill to amend the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 to postpone a scheduled increase in the minimum wage applicable to American Samoa, as amended, under suspension of the rules.  H.R. 2617 was introduced on June 2, 2015 by Del. Amata Radewagen (R-AS) and was referred to the Committee on Education and the Workforce.

Bill Summary

H.R. 2617 postpones a scheduled $0.50 increase in the minimum wage in American Samoa until December 31, 2016.  The bill also requires the Government Accountability Office (GAO), within one year of enactment, to provide a report to Congress on alternative ways of increasing the minimum wage in American Samoa.

Background

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), enacted in 1938, “provides for a federal minimum wage, overtime pay, and child labor protections.”[1]  The FLSA “applies generally to employment within American Samoa as it does to employment within the United States.[2]  However, prior to July 24, 2007, the minimum wage rates for American Samoa were set by a special industry committee appointed by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).  Click here for DOL industry definitions and applicable wage rates in American Samoa.

In 2007, Congress passed the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007, which mandated annual increases of $0.50 an hour until the minimum wage in each industry in American Samoa reached the federal minimum wage.  Congress postponed the planned increases for 2010 and 2011.  In July 2012, Congress passed legislation that delayed the increases for 2012, 2013, and 2014. The next minimum wage increases in American Samoa are scheduled for September 30, 2015. Thereafter, increases would be made every three years until they reach the federal minimum wage.[3]

H.R. 2617 amends Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 to postpone the scheduled increase until December 31, 2016.

________________
[1] See CRS Report—“The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): An Overview,” January 2, 2014 at 1.
[2] http://www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/americanSamoa/ASminwage.htm
[3]See CRS Report at 6 and 7.

Cost

A Congressional Budget Office (CBO) cost estimate is currently unavailable.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Jerry White with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.