In a moment of sanity Monday night Albuquerque’s City Council voted down a proposal to offer “hazard pay” to force businesses to pay workers during the pandemic more and a separate plan that would have created a new mandatory sick leave plan was withdrawn.
The sick leave ordinance would have required businesses that are within Albuquerque’s city limits to give full-time employees 80 hours of sick pay until the end of the year and create a new paid sick leave mandate. 80 hours of sick pay would be 2 full weeks during the last 25 or so weeks of the year.
The Council’s reasonableness is welcome, but of course we are not out of the woods yet when it comes to mandatory paid sick leave. Voters have previously rejected such plans and yet Councilors like Ike Benton keep pushing the issue. At least for now businesses that have been hammered by the economic shutdown, destructive riots, the loss of Balloon Fiesta and the State Fair, and many other economic drivers won’t face additional costs…for now.