The Obama administration’s plan to thrust millions of salaried workers into the non-exempt status that entitles them to overtime pay has been delayed until late 2016, according to Solicitor of Labor Patricia Smith.

Speaking at the American Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Conference in Philadelphia this week, Smith elicited gasps from the audience when she made her comment in front of the group, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The plan to raise the salary minimum for exempt-from-overtime-pay status from $23,660 to $50,400 a year garnered 290,000 public comments after being published.

Smith said the sheer number of comments submitted would require a complex review that could last until late 2016 before a final rule is published.

The Department of Labor (DOL) had no comments on Smith’s prediction.

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