from The Wall Street Journal Encouraged by the Feds, Cities Are Punishing Business by John Ella
The challenge for employers is not only the cost of higher wages or paid sick time. Multistate employers compelled to monitor new developments in thousands of cities instead of 50 states find the task overwhelming. Employers also have to track where each of their employees lives, or moves to, and works. Complying with the three-tiered patchwork of federal, state and local regulation means more opportunity for contradiction, as some laws’ requirements are the opposite of other laws. Changing a national payroll system to comply with the paid sick-leave ordinance in Passaic, N.J., might violate the law in San Francisco.
A backlash is already under way. Twelve states, including Florida, Georgia and Wisconsin, have enacted laws barring local governments from requiring businesses to provide paid sick leave. Fifteen states, including Pennsylvania and Colorado, have banned the enactment of minimum-wage requirements anywhere in the state.
A vibrant local economy is the best bet for workers. Such proliferation of localized mandates is the opposite of what is best for workers.