DENVER—Today, in the House Business Affairs and Labor Committee, Democrats gave a greenlight to a new entitlement program that will require all Colorado public and private sector employees to pay a premium based on yearly wages in order to receive up to 12 weeks of paid leave. House Bill 1307 creates a new state program, which is projected to require more than 200 new employees, to oversee paid leave claims, and grants the program director the authority to levy surcharges as needed to maintain program solvency.
Representative Dan Nordberg (R-Colorado Springs), the ranking Republican on the Committee, issued the following statement in response to the bill’s passage:
“Forcing all working Coloradans to pay a fee to support a new entitlement program is a new tax plain and simple,” said Nordberg. “But what’s even more concerning than circumventing TABOR, is this bill gives one person the authority to increase fees as needed – and with what we’ve seen from other government programs like Medicaid, there’s no telling how much more taxpayer money this new program will need to stay solvent.”
House Bill 1307, which passed on party lines, requires employers to guarantee the same or equivalent position for an employee when they return after 12 weeks, even if they have only been employed for 30 days.