With some notable exceptions, only the bills that make it out of the Labor & Public Employee Committee have a chance for passage in the 2010 General Assembly session. (Of course, some measures get put in as amendments to other bills, but that’s still more of the exception than the rule).
So it’s worth taking a quick peek to see what bills still have a chance of becoming law this year because of their approval from the Labor committee in the next few weeks. A full list is available here, but these are a few of the more newsworthy ones:
- H.B. 5060 would prohibit employers engaged in retail trade or accommodation and food service from denying a promotion to an employee solely because, before working for the employer, the employee had an arrest, criminal charge, or conviction which was (1) erased under the provision on juvenile delinquencies, families with service needs, youthful offenders, criminal charges that were dismissed or nolled, criminal charges resulting in not guilty verdicts, or pardoned convictions or (2) the subject of a provisional pardon.
(It’s a somewhat narrow provision because the law already prohibits employers from denying employment to a prospective employee or discharging or discriminating against an employee solely on the basis of a convection that is (1) erased under the same circumstances or (2) the subject of a provisional pardon.)
- In a broader measure, H.B. 5061 would prevent employers from using credit histories as a basis for employment decisions, with some narrow exceptions. The bill has been referred to the Judiciary committee despite opposition from the CHRO, the CBIA, the Department of Public Safety and the Division of Criminal Justice.
- H.B. 5204 would implement the recommendations of the Joint Enforcement Commission on Employee Misclassification and increase the penalties in instances of employee misclassification.
- H.B. 5284 would add a new protected class of individuals to employment discrimination laws — those who are victims of domestic violence.
- H.B. 5285 is this year’s workplace bullying bill which would require the Department of Administrative Services to report the number of complaints of bullying or abusive conduct in the state workforce to the General Assembly.
These bills are in addition to the CHRO revisions and the paid sick leave measures that I’ve previously discussed as well.
The regular session ends on May 5, 2010 so stay tuned over the next few weeks to see which measures move on, and which ones never get brought up for a vote.