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- Alabama: Employer Protections for COVID-19 Cases
- Arkansas: Truck Drivers are not Owed Minimum Wage for Specific Activities
- California: Guidance on New Pay Data Reporting Act
- California: NEW COVID-19 Resource Website
- San Francisco, CA: Hazard Pay Enacted for Certain Industries
- New Jersey: State UI Payroll Tax Reduced
Alabama: Employer Protections for COVID-19 Cases
As of February 11, 2021, SB 30 protects employers and businesses from liability for damages related to COVID-19, unless the entity acted with wanton, reckless, willful, or intentional misconduct, or the entity did not reasonably attempt to comply with public health guidance. The bill also limits liability to actual economic compensatory damages, and excludes noneconomic and punitive damages (except in the context of wrongful death).
Arkansas: Truck Drivers are not Owed Minimum Wage for Specific Activities
Beginning July 29, 2021, HB 1227 amends the statewide Minimum Wage Act to provide relief from liability for employers of motor vehicle drivers. Specifically, an employee engaged in a driving capacity is not owed minimum wage when engaging in activities that occur when:
- The employee is traveling to or from a personal residence;
- The employee is engaging in personal activity that is not primarily in furtherance of the employer’s business; or
- The employee is logging time as “off-duty” or “sleeper berth.”
California: Guidance on New Pay Data Reporting Act
This year, California employers of 100 or more employees who file annual EEO-1 reports are now required to submit pay data reports to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). The DEFH recently released reference materials containing instructions on how to prepare the pay data report, user guides, and templates for employer use. Pay data reporting must be submitted by March 31st this year and each subsequent year.
California: NEW COVID-19 Resource Website
California recently launched a new website that is a one-stop spot for COVID-19 information. The website does not create any new rules, but has information for employers and workers collected into one location, including a COVID-19 outreach toolkit. Employers should save the link as a go-to resource.
San Francisco, CA: Hazard Pay Enacted for Certain Industries
As of March 22, 2021, a new ordinance requires grocery stores and drug stores with 500 or more employees worldwide, including at least 20 employees in San Francisco, and janitorial and security contractors at these stores, must pay employees an additional $5 per hour (up to $35 per hour) during the public health emergency related to COVID-19. A poster is also required to be displayed in the workplace.
New Jersey: State UI Payroll Tax Reduced
On January 4, 2021, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed A-4853/S-3011, a bill that temporarily reduces business’ UI contribution rate through Fiscal year 2023. The bill also permits nonprofit and governmental employers who make UI payments in lieu of contributions to have payments reduced by 50% during public health emergencies. This temporary reduction is enabled by federal unemployment insurance advances.
Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.
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