PHILADELPHIA Pa - Mayor Jim Kenney and Councilman-at-large William Greenlee have issued the following statements regarding Senate Bill 128, which would preempt Philadelphia’s earned sick leave law.
“I strongly object to efforts by the Legislature to try to preempt a City ordinance that was fully vetted by City Council, then approved by a super-majority of Council members,” said the Mayor. “If successful, this would be a direct contravention of the concept of municipal home rule embodied for nearly a century in the Pennsylvania Constitution. For state lawmakers to cherry-pick and toss out City laws to which they may object undermines the right to home rule afforded to every municipality in the Commonwealth. Given that many of the sponsors regularly espouse the need for local control, the effort strikes me as particularly hypocritical, and I urge the full Senate and House to reject Senate Bill 128.”
“I am extremely disappointed that the legislature is once again attempting to interfere with how Philadelphia governs itself,” said Councilman Greenlee. “It is regrettable that upwards of 200,000 workers in Philadelphia, some of whom live in the nearby suburbs, could be denied paid sick leave that they are already earning under our law that went into effect 18 months ago. Such action would be injurious not only to the health of workers themselves but to their families and to the public in general.”
Philadelphia’s “Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces” Ordinance, sponsored by Councilman Greenlee, took effect in 2015 and provides for paid and unpaid sick leave for certain employees. Employees within the City are eligible to earn 1 hour of sick time for every 40 hours they work. Employers with 10 or more employees are required to provide paid sick leave. Employers with 9 or fewer employees are required to provide unpaid sick leave. A maximum of 40 sick time hours may be earned in a calendar year.
Senate Bill 128 was reported out of the Senate’s Local Government Committee on January 25th.