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Published on Monday, February 23, 2015

Many personnel bills survive first legislative cutoff

With last Friday’s cutoff for policy bills to move from committee, most of the personnel bills AWC has been tracking remain alive. Bills that survived the cut include:

  • HB 1194 allows a surviving spouse of a LEOFF 1 or 2 member killed in the line of duty to continue receiving worker’s compensation benefits even if the surviving spouse remarries.
  • HB 1230 allows the Public Employment Relations Commission to order binding interest arbitration in the case of an unfair labor practice.
  • HB 1273 makes a number of changes to the state’s Family and Medical Leave Act, including increasing the amount of leave an employee may take under some circumstances, requiring employer contributions to fund a statewide paid family leave program, and providing a formula for calculating the amount of employee paid leave.
  • HB 1354 establishes the Employee Anti-Retaliation Act, creating a new cause of action and penalties against an employer who violates employee wage and hour rights.
  • HB 1356 establishes minimum paid employee sick leave based on the size of the employer.
  • HB 1437/SB 5084 makes changes to the all payer health care claims database that was established in 2014.
  • HB 1602 extends presumptive disease to emergency medical technicians.
  • HB 1603 extends presumptive disease to public employee fire investigators.
  • HB 2138/SB 6017 provides annual cost of living increases to PERS 1 retirees.
  • SB 5329 requires contract negotiations with employee organizations to be conducted in an open meeting.
  • SB 5435 requires all cities and counties participating in state retirement systems to offer the state’s deferred compensation program.
  • SB 5509 specifies an occupational disease claim must arise out of and in the course of employment where the worker is exposed to the disease and outlines a four-part test.
  • SB 5576 requires workers to report workplace injuries "immediately" to the employer. Its House companion, HB 1253, did not survive the first cutoff.

Even though many personnel bills appear to be moving and may pass their house of origin, the philosophical differences on these issues between the Democrat-controlled House and the Republican-controlled Senate make it unlikely that any controversial bills will pass this session.

Categories: Personnel
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