ERIC Comments on Maryland Paid Sick Leave

February 9, 2018

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Maryland House of Delegates
House Office Building
6 Bladen Street
Annapolis, MD 21401

Dear Delegates,

The ERISA Industry Committee (“ERIC”) applauds the Maryland General Assembly’s efforts to increase access to paid sick and safe leave to its workers, but believe it should be accomplished in a manner that does not hinder employers in the process. The “Maryland Healthy Working Families Act” (“Act”), while well-intentioned, provides limited time for employers to make the necessary changes in order to be in compliance with the Act by February 11, 2018 (i.e., the implementation date of the Act).

It is for this reason that ERIC urges the House to pass Senate Bill 304 (“SB 304”), which the Maryland Senate just passed. SB 304 would appropriately delay the enforcement mechanisms under the Act until July 1. The extension would give employers additional time to either amend existing paid leave policies or create entire new policies. The extension in implementation would also allow the Commissioner of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation’s Division of Labor and Industry time to develop a model sick and safe leave policy for use by employers. Additionally, it would allow the Commissioner to provide adequate guidance to employers with existing paid leave policies on what aspects of the Act they are exempt from and what they still must abide by to stay in compliance with the Act. These documents would greatly assist employers on what, if any, modifications are necessary to paid leave policies before enforcement of the Act begins.

ERIC is the only national association that advocates exclusively for large employer plan sponsors on health, retirement, and compensation public policies on the federal, state, and local levels. ERIC members provide generous paid sick leave policies to millions of workers across the country, including many in Maryland. SB 304 would allow our members, and all other employers, additional time to ensure proper compliance with the Act.

ERIC would appreciate your support of Senate Bill 304. If you have any questions concerning our comments, or if we can be of further assistance, please contact us at (202) 789-1400 or bhum@eric.org.

Sincerely,

Bryan Hum
Associate, Retirement & Compensation Policy