Public Employers

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Summary of 2014 Connecticut Legislative Enactments Affecting The Public Schools and Public-Sector Employers

In This Issue: - Interpreters Standards For Students With Hearing Impairments - Preschool And DCF - Health Assessment Forms for Use by Youth Camps and Day Care Providers - English Language Learner...more

Supremes Rule That Trial Speech is Protected Speech – Part 1

This morning the U.S. Supreme Court issued an important decision affecting public employers and employee First Amendment rights to free speech. Lane v. Franks et al., No. 13-483 (U.S. June 19, 2014) Central Alabama Community...more

Louisiana Joins the Password Protected Trend

On May 22, 2014, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal signed into law the "Personal Online Account Privacy Protection Act." The measure, effective immediately, bans employers, including state and local governments, from requesting...more

Minnesota Legislature Establishes New Requirements for Public Contractors

On May 16, 2014, the Minnesota Legislature enacted a new statute that sets out several criteria for contractors bidding on public construction projects. The statute is effective as of January 1, 2015, and attempts to enhance...more

Employee Benefit Plan is Governmental Plan, Even Though Employees are Not, says District Court in 11th Circuit.

It is a deceptively simple statement: Governmental employee benefit plans are exempt from ERISA. 29 U.S.C. § 1003(b)(1). But what about an employee benefit plan of an entity affiliated with a governmental entity, but whose...more

Houston Passes Controversial Anti-Discrimination Ordinance

Late in the evening on May 28th, the Houston City Council passed a city ordinance that prohibits discrimination against employees on the basis of sexual orientation or trans-gender status. ...more

Paraprofessional FMLA Regulations Formally Adopted: School Paraprofessionals Will Now Be Eligible For FMLA Leave Once They Have...

On May 12, 2014, the Connecticut Secretary of State’s website posted the Department of Labor’s Family and Medical Leave for School Paraprofessionals final regulations. Under the new regulations, Connecticut school districts...more

Ain't No Sunshine for the Common Interest Privilege

Life in the public sector is just that: public. With the California Public Records Act and countless local sunshine ordinances, most public employees are keenly aware that much of what they write — be it in a report, letter,...more

Kennebec County v. Maine Public Employees Retirement System: An Important Ruling for Maine’s Governmental Employers

The Maine Supreme Judicial Court (Law Court) recently handed down an important ruling limiting the administrative authority of the Maine Public Employees Retirement System (MPERS). In Kennebec County v. Maine Public...more

OFCCP Expected to Issue Pay Data Tool and Retaliation Proposed Rules Later this Year

According to the Labor Department’s semiannual regulatory agenda, released on May 23, 2014, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) plans to issue proposed rules regarding federal contractor compensation...more

Rochester, New York Joins The "Ban-the-Box Movement"

On May 22, 2014, the City of Rochester became the second city in New York to “ban the box,” by adopting legislation restricting the timing of pre-employment inquiries by most Rochester public and private employers into a...more

New Delaware Law “Encourages” State Vendors to “Ban the Box”

Delaware’s Governor recently signed a “ban the box” law to prohibit public employers from inquiring into or considering the credit or criminal history of a job candidate during the initial application process (up to and...more

Can A GPS Result In TMI?

The answer is “yes” – tracking employees by using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) can give an employer too much information (TMI). Surreptitious Surveillance In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court held (in the case of U.S....more

Big Changes for Alberta Public Sector Pension Plans

On April 16, 2014, the government of Alberta tabled Bill 9, Public Sector Pension Plans Amendment Act, 2014 (Bill 9), which proposes significant changes to public sector pension plans in Alberta. In this blog post, I...more

Seventh Circuit Reminds Public Employers That Whistleblowing Employees Are Not Immune From All Discipline

The Seventh Circuit recently upheld the lower court’s summary judgment in favor of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and Schurtz High School administrators in a teacher’s action alleging violations of her First and Fourteenth...more

A Tale of Equal Pay Laws to Come? How Two New Executive Actions for Federal Contractors Could Eventually Affect All Employers

On Tuesday, April 8, 2014, President Obama signed an Executive Order and a Presidential Memorandum that, according to the White House, are aimed at combating pay discrimination and strengthening the enforcement of equal pay...more

CalPERS May Calculate Retirement Benefits for a City Council Member Separately From His Benefits as a City Employee

A city administrator-turned-elected city council member believed his retirement benefits would be based on his highest salary multiplied by all his years of service, including his years on the city council; however CalPERS...more

New York City Looks to Expand its Paid Sick Leave Law Before it Takes Effect in April 2014

Mayor Bill de Blasio and incoming Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito recently announced at a joint press conference that the New York City Council will look to expand the Earned Sick Time Act in the coming days. The...more

Court's Tentative Decision on San Jose's Pension Reform Measure Appears to Favor City

However, the Vested Rights Doctrine Proves Fatal to Core Pension Reform Measures - A tentative decision on the legal challenges to the City of San Jose’s pension reform measure, Measure B, was released late last month....more

Two New California Laws Will Affect Hiring and Fair Employment Practices

AB 556 Impacts All Employers; AB 218 Impacts Public Employers Only - Gov. Brown recently signed two bills that affect hiring and fair employment practices in California. Assembly Bill 556, which adds employment...more

Mayor Bloomberg Signs Pregnancy Discrimination Ban Into Law

Earlier this month, Mayor Michael Bloomberg signed into law legislation prohibiting pregnancy discrimination by New York City employers. The legislation, passed unanimously last month by the New York City Council, bars...more

Minnesota “Ban The Box” Legislation Update

Minnesota recently passed “ban the box” legislation, which will restrict private employers’ ability to ask about applicants’ criminal backgrounds on employment applications. Signed by the Governor on May 15, 2013 and...more

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