Employers need to examine policies, laws in light of Supreme Court same-sex marriage ruling

June 26, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 2 COMMENTS

The U.S. Supreme Court’s June 26 ruling in favor of same-sex marriage means employers across the country need to take a look at their policies as well as the effect the ruling has on various laws dealing with employment.Pride flag at city hall

The Court’s 5-4 ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges struck down prohibitions on gay marriage in states covered by the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals—Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee. But it has the effect of legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide.

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Appeals court keeps hold on Obama’s immigration orders

May 27, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

No quick resolution is in sight to the uncertainty surrounding President Barack Obama’s executive actions on immigration. On May 26, a three-judge panel of the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to lift a temporary hold on Obama’s actions, which were designed to ease deportation worries for millions of undocumented immigrants who have been in the United States for years.

“Employers will have to wait possibly months, or years, for the courts or Congress to resolve the status of undocumented immigrants who would have been eligible for work permits under President Obama’s executive action,” said Elaine C. Young, an attorney with the Kirton McConkie law firm in Salt Lake City and an editor of Utah Employment Law Letter.

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New circuit ruling complicates same-sex marriage issue

November 07, 2014 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

The issue of how employers should handle same-sex marriage got a bit murkier November 6 as a divided appeals court panel broke with rulings from four other U.S. circuit courts of appeals by upholding state bans on same-sex marriage.

A three-judge panel from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued the 2-1 decision, which allows bans on same-sex marriage in four states to stand. The court’s decision—affecting Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee—differs from other jurisdictions that have recently struck down similar state bans.

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Minimum wage going up in 10 states

December 10, 2012 - by: HR Hero Alerts 0 COMMENTS

The 2013 minimum hourly wage is set to go up in 10 states.

  • Arizona. The rate goes from $7.65 to $7.80. The state’s minimum wage is adjusted annually based on a cost-of-living formula.
  • Colorado. The rate is going from $7.64 an hour to $7.78 based on an annual cost-of-living adjustment.
  • Florida. The rate goes from $7.67 to $7.79 because of an annual cost-of-living adjustment.
  • Missouri. The rate goes from $7.25 to $7.35 because of an annual cost-of-living adjustment.
  • Montana. The rate rises from $7.65 to $7.80 based on a cost-of-living adjustment.
  • Ohio. The rate goes from $7.70 to $7.85.
  • Oregon. The minimum hourly rate goes from $8.80 to $8.95 because of an annual cost-of-living adjustment.
  • Rhode Island. Governor Lincoln Chafee signed into law the state’s first minimum wage hike since 2007, raising the rate from $7.40 to $7.75 per hour.
  • Vermont. The rate goes from $8.46 to $8.60 based on an increase in the Consumer Price Index.
  • Washington. The rate goes from $9.04 to $9.19 because of an annual cost-of-living adjustment.

The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. Federal law requires employers in states that set their own minimum wage to pay whichever rate is higher.

Union-Limiting Law Goes Down in Ohio

November 10, 2011 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

Ohio Governor John Kasich says he’s taking “a deep breath” after voters overwhelmingly rejected a state law he supported placing limits on collective bargaining for government workers.

Union supporters are praising the vote that rejected Senate Bill 5, a law that would have prohibited strikes by public-sector unions, ended binding arbitration, stopped promotions based totally on seniority, and made other changes. The law, which would have affected teachers, police officers, firefighters, and other public workers, had not yet taken effect. With 99 percent of precincts reporting, the vote was 61 percent to 39 percent to reject the law, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

“I’ve heard their voices, I understand their decision, and, frankly, I respect what people have to say in an effort like this,” Kasich told the Associated Press. “And as a result of that, it requires me to take a deep breath, you know, and to spend some time reflecting on what happened here.”

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Categories: Ohio

Four ECN Blogs Make LexisNexis Top 25 Listing

September 15, 2011 - by: HR Hero Alerts 0 COMMENTS

Employers Counsel Network LogoFour employment law blogs published by law firms that are part of the Employers Counsel Network (ECN) have been named to the LexisNexis Top 25 Labor and Employment Law Blogs of 2011.

Those making the list are: read more…

Ohio Joins Wisconsin, Idaho in Passing Union-Curbing Legislation

March 31, 2011 - by: Holly Jones 0 COMMENTS

Another state has secured victory in the battle to balance struggling state budgets by restricting collective bargaining rights for public-sector employees. Ohio Governor John Kasich has approved Senate Bill (SB) 5, a bill that is in some ways more restrictive than the highly publicized and protested Wisconsin bill that passed earlier this year.

The bill limits collective bargaining rights for public employees by prohibiting negotiations on health care, sick time, and pension benefits. Public employees would still be permitted to negotiate wages and certain work conditions but would be prohibited from participating in strikes. SB 5 also requires public employees to contribute a higher percentage of their health and pension benefits, reduces the number of vacation days and paid holidays for workers, and eliminates automatic pay increases, instead adopting a system of merit raises and performance pay.

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Six States Increase Indexed Minimum Wages for 2011

December 27, 2010 - by: Holly Jones 0 COMMENTS

As the new year approaches, a number of states will see index-driven increases to their minimum wage rates. Specifically, Arizona, Montana, Ohio, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington will each add around 10 cents per hour to their existing wage rates, based on an increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) of a little more than one percent from August 2009 to August 2010. Two other states, Florida and Missouri, have chosen not to adjust their indexed wages.

In Arizona, the state minimum wage will increase from $7.25 to $7.35 per hour and will remain at that rate throughout the next year. Tipped employees’ hourly wages also will increase 10 cents, from $4.25 to $4.35. The new minimum wage must be posted in an area where employees can read the poster, such as the break room.

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Ohio: More Business-Friendly Approach Is Likely

November 04, 2010 - by: HR Hero Alerts 0 COMMENTS

by Bradd N. Siegel, Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP

Republicans swept every major statewide race in Ohio, taking back the Governor’s Office, the Attorney General’s Office, and the post for chief justice of the Ohio Supreme Court from incumbent Democrats. Republicans also claimed the open U.S. Senate seat.

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Categories: Commentary / Election / Ohio

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Ohio Bill Would Expand List of Protected Classes

September 16, 2009 - by: HR Hero 0 COMMENTS

On Tuesday, September 15, 2009,  the Ohio House of Representatives passed a bill to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected classes under Chapter 4112, Ohio’s antidiscrimination statute, and R.C. 4111.17, which prohibits wage discrimination. The bill, H.B. 176, was introduced into the Ohio House in May and originally added “gender identity and expression” to the list of protected classes. An amendment to the bill eliminated gender expression as part of the definition of the protected class, narrowing the protection for gender identity to “gender-related identity, appearance, or mannerisms or other gender-related characteristics of an individual, with or without regard to the individual’s designated sex at birth.” The bill defines sexual orientation as “actual or perceived, heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality.”

Interestingly, the bill limits the statutes’ coverage for the two new classes — sexual orientation and gender identity — only to government employers and employers with 15 or more employees (as opposed to the four or more employees required for other protected classes). In addition, the bill provides an exception for “religious association[s], corporation[s], or societ[ies] . . . not organized for private profit, or any institution[s] organized for educational purposes . . . operated, supervised, or controlled by such [religious organizations]” to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity and expression except when the organization is engaged in a secular business activity unrelated to the religious or educational purpose for which it is organized.

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Categories: Ohio