Blog Archives

Sick Leave
2014 Legislative Session: Running Updates

Each year, the Hawaii Employers Council provides its members with updates on labor and employment law bills that are being addressed by the legislature. One of those documents, the Legislative Digest, is actually currently available to the general public, and can be accessed here:  HEC Legislative Updates.

Bills that are still alive as of the Second Lateral deadline address (1) the minimum wage, (2) payment of wages via direct deposit and pay cards, and (3) workers’ compensation drugs, fee schedule and settlements.

For the 2014 Legislative Session, the Legislative Digest is available for the following key deadlines:

  • Bills Introduced (available)
  • First Lateral (available)
  • First Crossover (available)
  • Second Lateral (available)
  • Second Crossover (available)
  • Sine Die  (available)
  • Veto Deadline (available)

As more deadlines pass, I will update this blog entry to indicate when the most recent Legislative Digest is available.

Other updates, such as articles providing a detailed explanation of several of the significant measures and talking points on certain bills, however, are available only to HEC members.

 
2014 Legislative Forecast

The 2014 Legislative Session begins on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 and runs through May 1, 2014.  This year, the legislature will likely address several labor and employment law bills that could have a significant impact on companies doing business in Hawaii.  Some of those bills include those affecting the following areas of law:

  • Minimum Wage
  • Prevailing Wage Violations for Public Works Projects
  • Successor Employers and Employee Retention
  • Paycheck Withholding Requirements
  • Independent Medical Examinations for WC Cases
  • Social Media Privacy
  • Meal Breaks
  • Sick and Safe Leave
  • Organ Donor Leave
  • Family School Leave
  • Discrimination Against Unemployed Individuals
  • GET Increase

I recently conducted a webinar for HEC members discussing each of these bills and what they could mean for employers. During the webinar, I (a) discussed the proposed changes or additions to Hawaii’s laws and (b) shared my thoughts on the impact that each of these proposed bills could have on companies doing business in Hawaii.  (HEC members can contact me for a copy of the handouts.)

In addition, I was also recently interviewed by the Pacific Business News (“PBN”) on some of the bills we anticipate will be heard during the 2014 legislative session, and their write-up ended up being the cover story for today’s edition of the PBN.  In addition to discussing employment law bills, the PBN article also discussed bills related to other issues affecting Hawaii employers.  PBN subscribers can access the article here:  Major Business Issues Facing the State Legislature in 2014.

On a final note:  To anybody who goes to the Capitol during session, if you see me there (and I will be there often), please feel free to say “Hi.”  Oh, and Happy New Year everybody!

 
It’s Official: Federal Judge Strikes Down Entire “Sick Leave Law”

Earlier this year, I reported that U.S. District Court Judge Susan Oki Mollway issued an order ruling that Hawaii’s sick leave discrimination law was unlawful.  In her initial order, Judge Mollway did not decide whether she would strike down the entire statute, or just invalidate part of the statute.  Rather, she set a hearing for last month to hear arguments from both parties to the lawsuit (although she indicated an inclination to strike down the entire law).

On May 1, 2013, Judge Mollway issued her decision, and ruled that the State of Hawaii is “permanently enjoined” from enforcing any part of the statute in question.  In other words, the entire statute was invalidated.

Writing about the sick leave law reminds me of  a Dilbert strip I read a loooooooooong ways back:

You can read a copy of her order here:  Permanent Injunction on Sick Leave Law.

 
HEC Legislative Digest Updated After First Crossover

The Hawaii Employers Council has an updated Legislative Digest, following First Crossover.  Some of the bills that are still alive address the following areas of law:

  • Successor Employers and Employee Retention
  • Social Media Privacy for Employees and Job Applicants
  • Breastfeeding for Employees
  • Paid Leave for Organ, Bone Marrow, or Stem Cell Donation
  • Minimum Wage Increases
  • Workers’ Compensation Medical Fee Schedule Increases

If you would like to view the Legislative Digest, you can view a copy here:  HEC Legislative Digest.

 
HEC Legislative Digest Now Available

Each state Legislative session, the Hawaii Employers Council prepares a Legislative Digest summarizing bills that may be of interest to Hawaii employers.  This year, the bills covered include those in the following categories:

  • Employment Practices and Employment Rights
  • Hawaii Family Leave Law
  • Wage and Hour – Minimum Wage
  • Wage and Hour – Miscellaneous
  • Unemployment Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Health and Insurance
  • Public Employees
  • Public Contracts
  • Government Agencies
  • General Excise Tax; Tax Credits
  • Miscellaneous

If you would like to view the Legislative Digest, you can view a copy here:  HEC Legislative Digest.