Plans by DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson to make changes to the paid leave bill passed in December of 2016 have been tabled for now. During a recent debate with his primary challenger Ed Lazere, Chairman Mendelson announced he would not pursue any changes to the law at this time.
Mendelson did not rule out future changes, but at this point ASAE advises all DC-based associations to budget for the 0.62% payroll tax on all employees that is set to go into effect on July 1, 2019. Employees would not be able to access the paid leave benefit until July 1, 2020 at a minimum, but very likely longer as technical delays are common with new government programs.
City Administrator Rashad Young has said publicly that delays in implementation and availability of leave are increasingly likely the longer the Council waits to make a final decision. The DC Department of Employment Services (DOES) posted proposed paid leave regulations on March 31. The proposed regulations can be found here.
ASAE has consistently suggested that an employer mandate model would best serve employees and employers. We continue to have serious concerns that the current legislation will result in reduced or eliminated benefits packages for many District employees and will create a government-run program that will be difficult to navigate for employees during challenging times in their lives. ASAE’s Public Policy team will continue to keep DC-area associations informed of updates on this issue.