Paid sick leave will be law in Maryland after legislative override of governor’s veto

All businesses in Maryland will be required to offer sick leave, after the General Assembly, as one of its first actions in 2018, overrode Governor Larry Hogan’s veto of the bill passed last year. Maryland dealers should therefore prepare for mandatory sick leave with financial advisors.

Hogan offered an alternative bill that would give employers more flexibility, but it gained no traction. The governor and others raised concerns about a provision in the bill that passed that would require workers who want to take more than two consecutive days of sick leave to verify why they need to do so. The governor said the requirement intrudes on citizens’ privacy.

The law requires Maryland businesses with 15 or more employees to offer five paid sick days a year, pro-rated for part-time workers. Businesses with fewer than 15 employees would have to offer five days of unpaid sick leave. The new law will make Maryland the ninth state to require paid sick leave. The District of Columbia and Montgomery Country also have such a law.

The Maryland Chamber of Commerce opposed the legislation and plans to work for a delay in the effective date to give businesses time to prepare. In this instance, the effective date would be 30 days after the Jan. veto override, or Feb. 11, unless, of course, there is a delay.

“While well-intended, the bill ignores business concerns about excessive fines for even small infractions, onerous administrative burdens, prohibitive costs to comply, unprecedented low thresholds for hours worked, and other threats,” the Chamber said in a statement.

Sen. Mike “Mac” Middleton said lawmakers are considering delaying the bill’s implementation from 30 to 90 days, the Baltimore Business Journal reported. Senate President Mike Miller reportedly is also open to considering a delay.  Stay tuned!