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City of Miami’s New “Responsible Wage Law”

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Interesting developments in employment law don’t just occur at the federal and state levels.  More and more, municipalities are passing ordinances regulating the terms and conditions of work, with sometimes dramatic impacts on local businesses and residents.1For instance, at least 140 communities in the U.S. have passed living-wage ordinances over the past 20 years.

Today, the Miami City Commission unanimously passed the responsible wage law, which requires city construction contractors to pay their employees a rate set by the city (following negotiations with the union).  The ordinance applies to city contracts in excess of $100,000.00.  The minimum hourly rate to be paid under covered contracts will combine a basic hourly rate of pay with fringe benefit payments (for hospitalization, medical pension and life insurance benefits).2Covered employers can pay the fringe benefit payments either on the covered employee’s behalf, or directly to the covered employee.  David Smiley (@NewsbySmiley) — who covers the City of Miami for the Miami Herald — reported on the vote.

 

David Smiley Tweet (a)

There are important record-keeping and anti-retaliation provisions in the ordinance.  Bidders on city contracts, and covered employers, should consult with counsel to ensure they are complying with this new ordinance.

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