DC Council approves paid family leave; MD plans paid sick leave

DC Council approves paid family leave; MD plans paid sick leave

The DC Council passed a bill approving three types of paid leave that all employers would be required to offer: eight weeks of family leave, six weeks to care for a sick family member and two weeks of employee sick leave. The leave would be funded by a 0.62 percent tax on all employers.

Although there are no franchised dealers in the District, the measure could still affect dealers outside the city as they compete for workers. Employees can benefit from the bill even if they live in Maryland or Virginia.

The bill passed a first reading by a veto-proof majority of 11-2. It is scheduled for a second reading on December 20. Earlier versions of the bill would have mandated 11 or 16 weeks of paid leave. Even the more modest version that passed is one of the more generous paid leave bills in the country.

The Greater Washington Board of Trade had pushed for an employee-funded leave system, such as some other states have. The bill that passed is controversial because of the estimated cost ($40 million to $80 million, according to the DC Chief Financial Officer) and because an estimated 65 percent of the benefits would go to workers who live outside the District.

In Maryland, Gov. Larry Hogan said he plans to introduce legislation in the next session of the General Assembly to provide paid sick leave –without placing an unmanageable burden on job creators.”

–We must strike a balance between the needs of Marylandês employees while not hurting our small businesses and continuing to foster a more business-friendly climate in our state,” Hogan said.

Under Hoganês bill, businesses with 50 or more employees will be required to offer paid sick leave totaling at least 40 hours a year, with part-time employees covered after a minimum of 30 working hours.

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