WASHINGTON, DC - US Senator Steve Daines is hoping his colleagues will approve a bill that he says will ease the regulations outfitters are facing when trying to comply with certain laws for their employees.
The challenges stem from the 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act, which requires businesses to meet standards for issues like overtime pay. That can present problems for guides and outfitters, who can't adhere to a fixed schedule as they take clients on trips that can be affected by weather and other conditions.
Under the bipartisan bill introduced by Daines and US Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz) on the Senate National Parks Subcommittee, outfitters and guides would be given an exemption from the overtime requirements. Businesses would be covered by the change if they operate for less than seven months per year and meet a formula for their receipts "for any six months of the preceding calendar year."
Daines notes Montana's outdoor economy is "thriving", saying the bill would "help protect Montana sportsmen jobs by cutting burdensome red tape" which he says is adding "unnecessary burdens to Montana small business owners."
Mac Minard, Executive Director for the Montana Outfitters and Guides Association says the bill is "critical" to protecting jobs, "especially in rural communities where opportunities are limited."