ORLA Update - October 14, 2022
Paid Leave Info | UI Refund Checks | Proposed Labor Rule
Oregon Employment Department Refund Checks
ORLA's biggest win during Covid at the state level was in House Bill 3389 where unemployment insurance (UI) tax reform passed. House Bill 3389 was collaborative legislation passed in 2021 to provide short- and long-term pandemic tax relief to Oregon employers while protecting the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. This important bill provided assistance to Oregon employers in several ways:
More Independent Contractors May Become Employees - Proposed Labor Rule
Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a proposed rule focused on classifying more workers as employees rather than independent contractors. The rule would 1) rescind the current independent contractor rule and 2) utilize a new “economic realities” test to determine if a worker is truly an independent contractor. This test includes factors such as investment, control, opportunity for profit or loss, and whether the work is integral to the employer’s business.
The Department intends to identify more workers as employees, and therefore eligible for standard minimum wage, overtime, and other protections through the Fair Labor Standards Act. In the press release, the Department says misclassification affects a “wide range of workers in the home care, janitorial services, trucking, delivery, construction, personal services, and hospitality and restaurant industries.” Comments on the proposed rule are due by November 28. For more insight on the potential impacts of this rule, read a recent editorial regarding California's law.
Oregon Paid Leave
As you are well aware, Oregon’s Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance program (PFMLI) goes into effect January 1, 2023, and is funded by employer and employee contributions. Employers with less than 25 employees are not required to contribute to the program, but their employees are. Employers will be required to participate in the program or provide an equivalent plan. ORLA is actively looking into private sector solutions for the industry and will keep you posted.
In the meantime, ORLA developed a PFMLI one-pager that helps answer some questions regarding Oregon’s new Paid Leave program. You can also find this on OregonRLA.org here:
Restaurant Economic Insights
The latest insights from the National Restaurant Association shows overall consumer spending in restaurants trended higher in August, inflation-adjusted (real) sales remained down from early-summer levels. Eating and drinking places registered total sales of $86.2B on a seasonally adjusted basis in August. In inflation-adjusted terms, that was $1.3B below the recent peak registered in May 2022.
As always, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to your Regional Representative.
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