Come Morn and Minimum Wage Rates Will Rise

Some eleven states and two municipalities are raising their minimum wage hourly rates on New Year’s Day 2009, topped by the City of Santa Fe with its $9.92 rate (closely followed by San Francisco at $9.79). Heading the states is Washington at $8.55 an hour. For a full list, check out this site. The federal […]

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Meanwhile, Back in the U.S. of A.: Severance Pay Woes

Turns out that a survey of severance pay around the world reveals that the U.S. pays the least of all monitored countries. READ THE SURVEY RESULTS

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Employees in China Get Unheard-of Job Protections

With tens of thousands of us Americans losing our jobs every week, I found it interesting to discover that China just in the past year implemented what’s called the Labor Contract Law, which basically gives every employee a nearly unbreakable contract with their employer. Plus, many of these contracts are open-ended, meaning they go on […]

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Nice Gig if You Can Get It

Here’s something I just learned. I generally don’t pay much attention to unemployment insurance law since I don’t qualify for it, but some people have been pretty smart at gaming the system. To wit: Under federal unemployment rules that are being changed Jan. 6, 2009, a worker who drew wages from jobs in two or […]

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What Is the Cost of Government Regulations?

Two George Mason University researchers looking into the cost of government regulations on American business conclude that the total burden amounts to a 1.6 percent excise tax on the “typical manufacturer.” Another way of framing the cost is in terms of dollars, which they say amounts to $1,700 per employee. The researchers, W. Mark Crain […]

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A New Protected Class: The Beauty Challenged

Over at the Ohio Employer’s Law Blog, Jon Hyman has an interesting discussion on the proposal to add ugly to the protected classes under labor law and employment laws. To wit, Hyman writes: “Under the current state of the law, it is illegal to discharge, to refuse to hire, or otherwise to discriminate with respect […]

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Paid Sick Leave: The Next Mandate?

President-elect Obama campaigned on a pledge to mandate paid sick leave at all places of work. Here’s how the president-elect’s Web site (Change.Gov) explained this: Half of all private sector workers have no paid sick days and the problem is worse for employees in low-paying jobs, where less than a quarter receive any paid sick […]

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What Exactly Is Free Choice?

One big labor law change anticipated in the Barack administration is enactment of the so-called Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), but like the Holy Roman Empire, which was neither holy, Roman nor an empire, does the EFCA really embody freedom and choice? For those on the business side of things–company owners and managers, et al.–the […]

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ADA Amendments Act Will Greet the New Year

The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), originally passed in 1990, sought to open up employment in the private sector to persons with physical or mental disabilities who were otherwise perfectly capable of performing the required duties. The ADA brought to private enterprise what the 1973 Rehabilitation Act did for federal agencies and firms carrying out […]

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Old Approach to Health Care Reform

Recently, I wrote about a fresh, holistic approach to health care that could well serve as the basis for a real reform effort. However, more likely what will happen is the Feds will copy the Massachusetts model for health care reform–and get it all wrong. The problem with all announced reform plans is that the […]

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