The July 1, 2017, implementation date for mandatory paid sick leave for the cities of Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Chicago, and for Cook County is rapidly approaching. In the past few months, there have been attempts to either block or opt out of some of the ordinances. Given these attempts, there may be some confusion as to the status of the ordinances.
Here’s a summary recap of the current status of these sick pay ordinances:
City of Minneapolis:
Preliminary rules were issued, along with a frequently asked questions document—both of which are open for public comment until May 1, 2017.
Any comments, questions, or concerns can be submitted by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. If submitting a comment or suggestion proposing specific revisions to the frequently asked questions document, please add "FAQs" in the subject line of your email.
The temporary injunction resulting from the case against the City of Minneapolis filed by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is still on appeal. As a result, the Minneapolis ordinance will not be enforced for any employer residing outside the city of Minneapolis unless the injunction is modified or rescinded.
Key Takeaway for MRA Members: As it currently stands, the paid sick leave ordinance will only apply to applicable employers who have a physical location within the city of Minneapolis.
City of St. Paul:
Preliminary rules were issued, along with a frequently asked questions document and are open for public comment until May 1, 2017. Individuals can submit questions online regarding the preliminary rules. Public comments will allow the City to clarify ordinance questions that may not have been initially identified in the rules.
Key Takeaway for MRA Members: The most significant proposed change from the original ordinance is that the eligibility definition has been changed to employers who have a physical location within the city.
City of Chicago:
No new developments since the passage of the ordinance on June 22, 2016.
Key Takeaway for MRA Members: A posting and notice that satisfies the requirements of the Chicago ordinance will be made available by the Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection prior to July 1, 2017.
Cook County, IL:
Draft interpretative and procedural rules were issued and public comment is open until May 8, 2017. A final version of these rules will be adopted on or before June 1, 2017.
Key Takeaway for MRA Members: An "opt out" provision can be adopted by cities within Cook County. Currently, the following cities have opted out of the County paid sick leave ordinance: Arlington Heights, Barrington, Bedford Park, Burr Ridge, Elk Grove Village, Elmwood Park, Evergreen Park, Hickory Hills, Mount Prospect, Oak Forest, Palatine, Palos Heights, Palos Park, River Forest, Riverside, Rolling Meadows, Rosemont, Schaumburg, Streamwood, Tinley Park, and Wheeling.
Additionally, the Minnesota House of Representatives introduced a preemption bill that would block cities from mandating greater sick leave levels than what is required by the State of Minnesota. Governor Dayton has indicated that he is supportive of paid sick leave ordinances so it is likely the preemption bill would not make it past his desk.
Employer Implementation Plan
MRA advises that affected employers continue to plan for a July 1, 2017, implementation of paid sick leave in their organizations. As a starting point, we recommend that you review your current plan against the ordinance requirements to identify gaps. Key areas to consider include:
- Usage definition
- Accrual rate
- Attendance policies (no retaliation/point systems)
In addition, employers will need to meet poster and handbook notification requirements.
How MRA Can Help:
Information and Tools: Our Mandatory Paid Sick Leave Toolkit has resources to help employers with compliance, along with our e-learning session on Mandatory Paid Sick Leave: Planning for Compliance.
Our Advisors answer members’ questions, 24/7, at 866-HR-HOTLINE (866-474-6854), or email InfoNow@mranet.org.
Total Rewards Professionals: Whether you have a Paid Time Off (PTO) plan, a traditional vacation and sick plan, an unlimited time-off plan, or a no time-off plan, MRA can assist you in developing an appropriate strategy and plan design to support your specific business environment and comply with the various time-off regulations.
Additional MRA Services: Employee Handbooks, Time-Off Plan Services, and Policies & Benefits Surveys.
Source: Linda Jancaric, Compensation Director, MRA - The Management Association