Having solved all other fiscal problems in NY, our legislators are working to kill more businesses with this bill. Below is an article from Cranes New York
Advocates for a law requiring city businesses to offer their employees paid sick days step up their efforts as similar measures advance in Connecticut and Philadelphia.
Connecticut legislators are about to pass a bill to make their state the first in the nation to require employers to provide workers with paid sick time. And City Council members in Philadelphia are expected to vote Thursday on a bill mandating up to seven paid sick days per year for workers.
With that momentum, advocates in New York City are stepping up efforts to revive a sick-pay bill shelved last year by City Council Speaker Christine Quinn over concerns that it would harm small businesses.
“Making sure New Yorkers can take a day off when they are sick or need to care for their children—without having to miss a paycheck or worry about losing their job—is the right thing for workers,” said Councilwoman Gale Brewer, the bill’s lead sponsor. “Our neighbors [Connecticut and Philadelphia] recognize the same logic and know it’s the right thing for businesses, too. The time has come for paid sick days in New York City.”
The Council bill is being pushed by the New York State Paid Family Leave Coalition, an alliance of more than 400 labor, community, business and women’s groups. As in Connecticut, where lawmakers could vote Friday or Saturday on sick pay, the local chapter of the Working Families Party is an active member of the group. Members are meeting regularly and expect to soon re-launch a public campaign geared towards bringing the bill to a vote this fall.
Ms. Brewer said she will be meeting with fellow Council members to let them know about the developments on sick pay around the country.
Her bill would require businesses with 20 or more employees to offer nine sick days a year and smaller businesses to give five. It has 35 sponsors in the Council, one more than needed to overcome a potential veto by Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Despite her members’ sponsorship, Ms. Quinn did not let the bill get to a vote last year, contending it would have a crushing impact on small businesses in a down economy. She promised to revisit the issue every two months, assessing whether economic conditions had improved.
The city’s economic recovery has outpaced that of the nation, with the five boroughs adding nearly 40,000 jobs in the first four months of the year, according to real estate services firm Eastern Consolidated. In the past 19 months, the city has recovered more than half of the jobs lost in the downturn, while the nation has recovered only about 20% of its losses.
“Even though the city’s fared better, we’re far from seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, especially when you’re looking at small businesses,” said Linda Baran, president of the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce, part of a coalition of chambers that led opposition to the bill last year. “Locally, I don’t know any small businesses that are hiring. They’re concerned about making their payroll.”
Carl Hum, president of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, said that one only need to look at Friday’s weak national jobs report to know that the economy is “still pretty fragile.” He said that the Connecticut bill appears to be moving forward “over the objection of business groups” and that “the difference here in New York is that we have a speaker that brought the business community in to talk about the bill.”
A spokesman for Ms. Quinn said that conversations with Ms. Brewer about paid sick days are ongoing. Ms. Brewer said that the speaker has asked about the upcoming vote in Philadelphia. It’s unclear if she will be swayed by efforts in other states, which are being led primarily by the 15-state consortium Family Values @ Work.
In addition to the votes in Connecticut and Philadelphia, the Seattle City Council is set to introduce a sick-pay bill on Wednesday; a bi-partisan group of state legislators in Georgia led by five Republicans is supporting a measure to allow workers to use sick time to care for children and other family members; and a coalition in Denver is pressing for a ballot initiative on sick days in November. San Francisco and Washington already require paid sick days.
The White House has also entered the fray, hosting a series of workplace flexibility forums—including one in New York City this week—designed to help American workers meet the demands of their jobs without sacrificing the needs of their families.
“We know New York is different, and we’re willing to work towards what would make sense for everybody,” Ms. Brewer said. “But I’m hoping that the national momentum pushes us here.”