New York Governor Proposes Significant Workplace Legislation in 2021 Budget

January 31, 2020

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposed 2021 budget includes three measures that would mandate employers provide paid sick leave, increase disclosure requirements for state contractors regarding sexual harassment complaints, and create a “gig economy” task force to propose legislation regarding independent contractors.

The Governor’s budget proposes legislation requiring:

  • Employers with 100 or more employees provide seven days of paid sick leave per year at an accrual rate of one hour of leave per 30 hours worked;

  • State contractors disclose the total number of adverse judgments or administrative rulings arising from allegations of sexual harassment during the preceding year, the total number of settlements that relate to corporate executives, and the total number of settlements entered into that directly or indirectly provided compensation.

The proposed budget would also create a “digital marketplace worker classification task force” to recommend legislation “addressing the conditions of employment and classification of workers in the modern economy of on-demand workers connected to customers via the internet.”

The NY Department of Labor would also be directed to “consider” whether an “ABC” test should be the appropriate standard for whether gig economy workers should be classified as employees or independent contractors.

Outlook: Governor Cuomo has successfully used the budget over the past few years to enact significant employment legislation.  It is highly likely these proposals will become law this year.