The Wage and Hour Division of the US Department of Labor has requested $277 million for fiscal 2016, including more than $31 million for 300 additional enforcement and support staff. The additional staff would enable the division to “address systemic compliance problems more strategically.”

Citing the increasingly “fissured” nature of the employer/employee relationship, the division says it needs to “adapt and respond to this new paradigm by introducing new enforcement strategies and applying new technologies to educate workers, employers and the public.” The division’s 2016 budget request tops last year’s by about $50 million.

Also included in the budget request:

• $3.6 million for the WHD’s modernization program, providing new capabilities and tools made available by the DOL enterprise architecture.

• $1.5 million for 12 FTEs economists/statisticians to develop and expand the analytical and statistical capacity of the agency.

• $5.8 million for a new, integrated case management system to replace the current outdated system, which impedes WHD’s efforts to advance its strategic enforcement strategies.

• $800,000 and five FTEs to support WHD’s training and development program.