Various States of Emergency

As of this writing, COVID-19 has caused 48 of the 50 United States to declare public emergencies at the state level to some degree or another. Only Oklahoma and West Virginia have yet to make such a declaration. In each of the states, the public emergency declaration gives the governments additional tools, flexibility and power…

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AFL-CIO Supports and Opposes Federal Help

The old adage that ‘it depends on whose ox is being gored’ sprung to mind when we read the position of the AFL-CIO relating the coronavirus economic recovery steps floated by the Trump administration this week. True to form, the national federation of organized labor was totally supportive of proposed emergency paid leave benefits for…

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The Coronavirus & Employment

As more news of the coronavirus spreading across the globe is reported, it seems timely to review some of the information available about Covid-19 (the formal name for the virus) and what steps employers should consider taking to protect themselves, their employees and their business to minimize the risk of contagion. In that regard, we…

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Paid Leave Vote Fails, Tax Collections To Begin

On the broader subject of mandatory paid sick leave, the county legislature in Albany County New York surprised many when, by a 21 -17 tally, it voted down a mandatory paid sick leave proposal it has been debating for over a year. The proposal would have required private employers within the county to provide their…

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US Senate Forms Federal Family Leave Group

The issue itself has been kicking around for a couple of years now, but the US Senate Finance Committee this week advanced the priority of the issue with the appointment of a bi-partisan work group to study federal family leave. Senator Maggie Hassan, a democrat from New Hampshire will co-chair the federal family leave work…

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Minimum Wage Study Verifies Impact

The small town of Emeryville outside Oakland, California adopted an aggressive living wage law back in 2015. Just one month after the city council passed the minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave ordinance on June 2, the $9.00 minimum wage increased to $12.25 for small businesses (55 or fewer employees) and to $14.44 for large…

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Governor Vetoes Paid Leave

New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu last week vetoed new legislation mandating paid leave in the Granite State. SB 1, which cleared the legislature just a day before the Governor vetoed it, would have dictated that businesses provide paid family leave insurance to all employees (similar to programs in New York and Rhode Island) and would…

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Portland Yields Paid Leave to State Effort

Early this week, the Portland Maine City Council rejected a proposed ordinance to mandate paid sick leave for all employees instead endorsing the idea of one statewide paid leave standard. By a vote of 5-4 on Monday evening, the Council put to bed any further consideration of a local mandate and instead is working with…

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Maine Paid Leave Shifting

A compromise seems to have been brokered by Governor Janet Mills in the state of Maine over mandating paid leave benefits for private employees. The legislature’s Labor Committee this week approved compromise legislation that would apply to businesses with more than 10 employees who work for a business more than three months in a year.…

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Maine Advances Pay Equality, Mulls Sick Leave

At the state level, paid leave continues to crop up in State Capitols with Maine being only the latest example. The legislature’s Committee on Labor and Housing entertained a bill at a public hearing on Monday that would mandate businesses with more than 5 employees provide 5 days of paid leave annually. Similar legislation has…

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