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House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Va., left, accompanied by House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, wants to give employees who work more than 40 hours a week the option of taking paid time off instead of overtime pay. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

WASHINGTON — It seems like a simple proposition: give employees who work more than 40 hours a week the option of taking paid time off instead of overtime pay.

The choice already exists in the public sector. Federal and state workers can save earned time off and use it weeks or even months later to attend a parent-teacher conference, care for an elderly parent or deal with home repairs.

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