Public Employees – HB 13 is the State Pay Plan for the 2015-17 – LC 194 would prohibit rollovers into government 457 deferred compensation plans – LC 634 would eliminate the requirement for state service to be continuous when calculating longevity pay
Health Insurance – Numerous bills would address the extension of Medicaid or prohibit the same – The Republication majority plans to introduce an alternative to Medicaid expansion – SB 99 would change the small employer tax credit to a deduction and replace the Insure Montana Purchasing Pool with a premium incentive plan
– LC 350 would authorize “Direct primary care provider plans“ Would not be an insurance plan and billing insurance would be prohibited
Wage and Hour SB2 would increase the MT Min wage to $10.10 plus index to future inflation
Unemployment Insurance – SB 85 would give DOLI authority to collect unpaid taxes or benefits overpayments – SB 105 would mandate filing of reports and payment of contributions electronically for employers with 50+ staff or $1 million in wages. – LC 1494 would allow UI for non-instructional school employees between school years or during vacations or holiday closures
Unemployment Insurance – LC 635 would eliminate the 10 week limit on UI benefits for victims of domestic abuse
Guns – LC 298 provides for creation of home guard companies and provides for activation by state or county officers – LC 498 would provide for an Employee’s “Safe Travel to Work”
Workers’ Compensation – Numerous Workers’ compensation bills are pending but only those related to governance of the state fund are public.
OSHA – LC 477 sets the stage for Montana to implement a state sponsored OSHA plan beginning in 2017 Initial step is to develop a plan and get US Department of Labor approval. If plan is approved, 2017 would create the infrastructure
Hiring – LC 633 and 983 would provide for a “hire Montanans First” provision in construction contracts and provide both penalties and tax consequences for energy facilities not constructed with Montana labor – LC 618 would create a voluntary private sector Vets hiring preference
Miscellaneous – LC 616 would provide that if an employer has paid vacation or sick leave, employee must be able to use the credits for domestic violence or sexual assault related absences
Pay Equity – LC 626 would ban employer prohibitions on discussing wages and require that wages be based on factors as education, training, and experience or bona fide factors other than gender if the employer is able to demonstrate that the factor: is not based on or derived from a gender-based differential in compensation; is job-related with respect to the position in question; and is consistent with business necessity.
Privacy Related – Several bills would revise Montana law to allow for same gender marriage. – LC1299 would allow drug testing of any prospective or current employee – LC 73 would prohibit employers requiring disclosure of social media passwords and expressly allows access to devices issued by the employer
Discrimination Law- EEOC Reasonable Accommodation during Pregnancy US Supreme Court’s Young v UPS case
Federal Contractors Federal Contractors have new or proposed rules related to: A minimum wage of $10.10 per hour Wage Transparency rules New affirmative action obligations for veterans and disabled Safe Workplace
Collective Bargaining- NLRB The NRLB has issued decisions, new or proposed rules: The final “Ambush” Election Rule: requires the employer submit a “Statement of Position” within 7 days of receipt of the election petition Requires a pre-election hearing within 8 days of receipt of the election petition but limits the issues and evidence that can be presented at a pre-election hearing Eliminates the employer’s ability to appeal pre-election decisions Eliminates the current 25-day “grace period” between the end of the hearing and the election Employers are required to employee personal information—home addresses, telephone numbers, shift schedules, work locations, and e-mail addresses—to union organizers
Collective Bargaining- NLRB NLRB is modifying the current joint employer standard – For over 30 years, the NLRB has viewed direct and immediate control over the same employees as joint employment – The McDonald’s and Browning-Ferris cases will changes this to make brand name corporations responsible for the employment decisions and actions of its local franchise business owners
The NLRB’s Purple Communications Decision The Communications Workers of America filed a complaint in 2012; it was decided December 11, 2014 employees who have rightful access to their employer’s email system in the course of their work have a right to use the email system to engage in Section 7-protected communications on nonworking time.
– Employers can justify a blanket ban on nonwork time use of email only by demonstrating that “special circumstances make the ban necessary to maintain production or discipline.” – Employers are permitted to apply uniform and consistently enforced controls over its email system “to the extent such controls are necessary to maintain production and discipline.”
Federal Contractors - OFCCP New Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors $10.10 effective 1/1/15 Wage Transparency Rules Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces (Eff 2016)
Significant US Supreme Court Decisions – Integrity Staffing v Busk- Security screening not compensable – Mach Mining v EEOC- Must EEOC pursue conciliation before litigation – EEOC v Abercrombie- When is an employer “on notice” of the need for a religious accommodation
SCOTUS – Perez v Mortgage Bankers- Must an Agency notice and take comments on significant changes of interpretations of regulations – King v Burwell- Are tax credits allowed in federal ACA exchange?
State Trends Ban the Box: Seven states have restricted the use of credit reports in hiring or made them a post-offer issue. 20 states are considering such restrictions. (Montana-2011) Twenty states protect sexual orientation Sixteen states protect gender identity (Montana)
Seven states have restricted the use of credit reports in hiring or made them a post-offer issue. 20 states are considering such restrictions. (Montana-2011) Twenty states protect sexual orientation Sixteen states protect gender identity (Montana)
Five jurisdictions mandate paid sick (Montana has a 2015 bill) Several states (MD, MA, NY) are considering anti-bullying laws (Montana 2015) Seventeen States require E-Verify use Supreme Court approved Arizona law. Tennessee considering criminalizing some union activity A dozen states protect workers rights to have guns in workplace. (Montana 2003-2011)
For More Information: Jim Nys email@example.com@personnel-plus.com
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