Senate Approves Major Paid Sick Leave Expansion

Issues & Policies

One of two bills designed to significantly expand the state’s paid sick leave law passed the Senate May 18 and now awaits an uncertain future in the House.

SB 1178 expands current law to cover all private-sector employers and employees, broadens the range of family members for which employees can use leave, increases the leave accrual rate, and broadens reasons for leave. 

The Senate passed the bill, which originated in the Labor and Public Employees Committee, on a 20-12 vote, with four senators absent.

Current law requires all businesses with 50 or more employees that employ service workers—a long list of certain job titles in various industries—to provide up to 40 hours of annual paid sick leave each year.

The law requires that employees accrue those hours at a rate of one hour for each 40 hours worked, and allows up to 40 hours of leave to be carried each year, with a maximum accrual of 40 hours. 

Floor Amendment

SB 1178 requires that all private sector employees be provided up to 40 hours of annual paid sick leave, with unused leave carried over, although annual leave is capped at 40 hours.

The bill originally called for the expansion of the law to all employees with a maximum of 80 hours annual leave.

However, a floor amendment maintained the expansion to all workers while reducing the maximum number of hours to 40.

The amendment also removed language that would have resulted in more civil actions related to enforcement of the law. 

SB 1178’s requirements will prove particularly costly for the state’s small businesses.

Uphill Battle

As currently drafted, SB 1178 faces an uphill battle in the state House thanks to advocacy efforts by CBIA and allied groups.

While there likely are not enough votes in the House for the bill, there may be support for a less aggressive version that could be passed and sent back to the Senate.    

Lawmakers are also considering HB 6668—the Lamont administration’s paid sick leave proposal—which modifies state law to require all employers with 11 or more employees to provide 40 hours of annual leave.

That bill also requires employers with 10 or fewer employers to offer 40 hours of unpaid sick leave to all employees and accelerates the accrual rate.

HB 6668 is currently waiting action in the House.

For more information, contact CBIA’s Eric Gjede (860.480.1784) | @egjede.


4 thoughts on “Senate Approves Major Paid Sick Leave Expansion”

  1. James Flood says:

    I am closing my family’s corporation in December this year after 70 years of operation. This bill is represents one of the primary reasons why.

  2. SB1178 and HB6668 bills are detrimental to keeping CT businesses competitive with the rest of the country and international suppliers. More paid time off is not the answer to growing Connecticut’s economy.

  3. Elaine Hagelin says:

    Our business with 18 employees have 40 hours of paid sick time per year. At the beginning of each year 40 hours is given and there is no carry over from previous year. I think this is fair, its only five days and some people use it up right away and others never use any. They also get vacation time, based on how long they have been with the company. We found that if sick pay wasnt given, some employees would come in sick, and therefore spreading their germs to other employees. We have told them, if you are sick, please stay home.

  4. Donna Cote says:

    One way that private sector businesses compete with each other is by the employee benefits they offer. Government is interfering with this competitive process and also making CT very costly to new businesses. Sick time mandates, health insurance mandates, FMLA mandates, retirement plan mandates, minimum wage, corporate tax surcharges, a faulty unemployment contribution formula in 2022, unemployment surcharges to pay the interest on federal loans….where does it end?

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