Some Updates to Proposed Legislation Around the State

by Ryan Orr on April 2, 2015

in Alert,Family Leave,Recruiting & Hiring

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The last couple weeks have seen a few major changes in some proposed new laws around the state.

The first big development involved the proposed Oregon paid sick leave law. Oregon’s state Senate Workforce Committee approved the bill to move on to the Ways and Means Committee. The Workforce Committee did, however, make some revisions to the bill before passing it.

Some notable changes to the bill were changing the minimum required paid sick leave hours to 40 from 56, making the law applicable only to employers with six or more employees, and including a preemption provision that would make the state law override local sick leave laws passed in Portland and Eugene. We will continue to monitor this bill as it makes its way through the legislature.

The next development occurred with Portland’s proposed “ban-the-box” ordinance, which is legislation that would prohibit Portland employers from asking about criminal convictions on an application. The City is delaying putting the proposed ordinance to a vote due to opposition from the business community. The chief issue is that the current form of the ordinance would have the effect of creating a new protected class for individuals with a criminal conviction and would give rise to a private right of action for violations of the law.

The City is looking at revising the ordinance so that the City (or possibly BOLI if contracted) could bring enforcement actions and/or levy penalties against businesses that violate the law, but individuals could not bring lawsuits against businesses for violations. As with the statewide sick leave bill, we will watch for any new developments in this law and keep you updated.

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