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City Passes Sick Leave Ordinance

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EUGENE, Ore. — A long debated and at times contentious ordinance, now approved.
Employers in Eugene are required to provide sick leave for their employees.
The Eugene City Council passed an ordinance Monday night making employers provide their workers with one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked.
The council didn’t waste any time in passing this ordinance.
It was an item on their agenda for their 7:30 p.m. work session Monday night but the council ended up voting on the ordinance in their earlier 5:30 p.m. meeting.
At the later meeting a number of people applauded the council’s decision.
In fact, not one person during public comment spoke against the council’s vote.
The decision comes after months of talks on this issue and hearing from a divided community.
At a public hearing last week nearly 70 people signed up for public comment.
Workers have said they need the paid sick leave because they often end up choosing between paying their bills and going to work sick.
Business leaders have said this ordinance would go over their heads and business would suffer.
But Mayor Kitty Piercy says both sides have had a voice on the matter.
“We had a task force that had people who were for it and people who were against it and a lot of businesses. And they all got to bring up all their issues because that was the whole purpose of the task force, tell us all the things you’re concerned about,” said Piercy.
There were some amendments to the ordinance.
Businesses who are based outside of Eugene won’t fall under this ordinance.
But if they have employees who work inside the city limits for 240 hours a year, then they’d need to provide them with paid sick leave.
Lane County recently passed its own ordinance exempting county employees from the ordinance.
But Monday night the council also amended its version exempting governmental agencies including Lane County, potentially avoiding a legal battle.

6 comments

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  1. Paul says:

    So when did Eugene become the size of Portland or San Fransico ? some of the stuff the city comes up with makes no sense..I think we should work on recalling all the city council plus the worthless mayor. that to me makes more sense. I am not against the whole sick leave thing..but soon there wont be a business that wants to start in eugene..now that Obama care has made the work week for full time to 30 hours a week..
    I have a idea for the City, State and County politicians, lets get some jobs here..then you can go on stealing from the people that elected you to fix the problems, not make them worse!

  2. Robin says:

    I find the Mayor’s comments about both sides having a voice on the matter false. There is a difference between the appearance of input and actually listening to, considering and weighing both sides. The city council majority creates gestures of inclusion, but they have no real openness to hearing business concerns on any issue. This ordinance, the west 11th EMX debacle, the Willamette reworking. Yes business came out and spoke, but it was not heard. Next up minimum wage. Since we are in the same league as Seattle, Portland and San Francisco, why not follow Seattle’s lead and increase it to $15 an hour, better yet $20 an hour. After all, we are bustling community are we not.

  3. Greg Ansn says:

    You have “laid the straw that broke the camels back”. As an employer inside the city of Eugene I was getting tired of paying all the arbitrary tax, fees and totally arbitrary regulations. Now this.
    Instead of limiting all my employees to less than a 30 hour work week I’m going to lay them all off and move. No tax: No fee; No regulations; No employees (who pay tax, fees, food on the table, etc,etc. I AM GONE!

  4. Glen says:

    City and counties across Oregon wonder why their down town areas become ghost towns with small local businesses shutting down and no one willing to move in?????

  5. Doug says:

    The City of Eugene does everything in its power to enhance Springfield’s attractiveness going forward.In fact, in western Oregon the phrase, “anywhere but Eugene” comes to mind.

  6. Marvin Cosby says:

    Sad day! The responsibility of the city “leaders” is to manage the infrastructure, police and fire departments, city employees and not much more. I cannot see a place for city counsel or the mayor to inject “their” will over private sector employers or their employees; period. If private sector employees desire benefits not already afforded to them that is where representation by a union comes in. Someone to mediate between employee and employer. If you are not under a union you have the right under the law to be so if you and your co-workers desire. This is what is known as democracy. You remember government by the people for the people a majority. What the mayor and city has done is similar to racketeering. It’s not their business!

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