Local Law Preemption of Leave Mandates

The Issue:

Local units of government are increasingly passing local laws governing employers’ relations with their employees. They often look to mandate paid or unpaid leave, minimum wages higher than the state and other benefits and/or terms and conditions of employment. Typically, these laws and ordinances are detailed and complex and expressly apply to small and large employers, cover both full- and part-time employees. Many variables come into play with these local laws that make it extremely burdensome on business, especially if a business has multiple locations and therefore multiple rules to follow. 

Where We Stand:

The Michigan Chamber was highly concerned about the trend we were seeing nationwide, so we worked to pass legislation to preempt these local laws before they were ever enacted. 

Absent Public Act 105 of 2015, Michigan's 1,800+ local units of government could have potentially enacted different local labor law mandates on businesses. Now, only the state and federal government have the authority to enact these laws, creating one law for all businesses to comply.  

Our support for preemption is not about whether employers should offer a fair wage, paid or unpaid leave time or any other particular benefit. Rather, it is about who should make these decisions. We do not believe local units of government should adopt aggressive new mandates governing employers’ relations with their employees. Put simply, allowing local employment-related ordinances can subject job providers to a patchwork of regulations, reduce incentives to invest in the communities that adopt them, and ultimately discourage growth in our state.

Staff Contact: 
Wendy Block
Director of Health Policy & Human Resources
(517) 371-7678