Q. We operate an outside recreational facility that is only operational for three months a year. Our attorney has advised us that we are not required to pay the current Ohio minimum wage orrate as stipulated on the Ohio minimum wage poster. I thought that all Ohio employers were required to pay the minimum wage rate and overtime, and do not want to violate the law. Is our attorney’s advice correct?
A. The short answer is yes. The rules governing payment of minimum wage and overtime in Ohio are derived from two sources: the federal Fair Labor Standards Act () and Ohio’s Minimum Fair Wage Standards. Although the Ohio minimum wage ($6.85 per hour) is higher than the federal minimum wage standard ($5.85 per hour), the Ohio law incorporates many of the definitions and exemptions contained within the FLSA. The FLSA’s exemptions describe certain employees and industries that are exempt from the minimum wage and overtime requirements of the act.
The FLSA exempts any employee who is employed by an amusement or recreational establishment, organized camp or religious or nonprofit educational conference center if:
- It does not operate for more than seven months in any calendar year or
- During the preceding calendar year, its average receipts for any six months of such year were not more than 33 1/3% of its average receipts for the other six months of such year.
Because your facility operates only three months of the year, it appears to fall within the exemption for seasonal amusement or recreational establishments of the FLSA and Ohio’s minimum fair wage standards. Your attorney is correct.