HR Policy Files Comments Opposing DOL's Proposed Equal Pay Report

January 16, 2015

The Association has filed comments recommending that the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs withdraw its proposed rule requiring federal contractors to submit an annual report that would result in the collection of a considerable amount of misleading data to be used by OFCCP to produce industry standards to help target enforcement.  Notably, a similar tool used previously by the agency was found to have incorrectly targeted audits 93 percent of the time.  The so-called Equal Pay Report will be required to include the total number of employees (including those not assigned to federal contracts); total W-2 earnings; and total hours worked for each EEO-1 job category by race, gender and ethnicity.  OFCCP would compare each contractor establishment's Equal Pay Report to the relevant industry standard to prioritize contractors for compliance evaluations. HR Policy's comments recommend OFCCP withdraw its rulemaking because:

  • There is no justification for the burdensome paperwork requirement;
  • OFCCP enforcement data suggest current compensation discrimination laws are functioning as intended;
  • The proposed rule will not have a significant deterrent effect;
  • Citing the wage gap alone does not provide a basis for the new rule;
  • There are serious confidentiality concerns regarding the potential public release of an individual contractor's data; and
  • Misleading industry standards will misdirect and waste OFCCP and contractor resources.
OFCCP is expected to publish a final Equal Pay Report rule in August 2015, and the first reports may be due as early as March 31, 2016.