Local Labor Regulations Getting The Boot

Minnesota House of Representatives, Photo Via MN House Media

Minneapolis and St. Paul sick leave mandates facing challenge

St. Paul, MN – A new bill may nullify the sick leave mandates put in place by Minneapolis and St. Paul before they even take effect.

Last year Minneapolis and St. Paul passed ordinances requiring employers to provide all employees—full-time, part-time, or temporary—an hour of paid sick time for every 30 hours worked.

The Uniform State Labor Standards Act would take away cities’ power to enforce labor mandates, instead leaving the power up to the state. The bill is retroactive to January 2016, and would void the sick leave city mandates.

Rep. Pat Garofalo (R – Farmington), the lead sponsor of the bill, believes uniformity in labor standards is crucial.

“There are 854 cities in the state of Minnesota. It is unrealistic and unproductive to have 854 different labor standards,” he said during the hearing.

Garofalo’s bill prevents four labor mandates. Cities may not regulate wage, paid or unpaid leave time, hours or scheduling, or any particular benefit or working condition. Labor regulations must be left up to the state in order to keep labor standards uniform statewide.

After four hours of heated discussion, the bill passed through a House job growth committee with a 13-9 vote. The bill was referred to the Government Operations and Election Policy Committee for a hearing next week.

The Senate has brought forward their own version of the bill which goes to committee Monday.

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Christine Bauman