PSL Watch: Duluth, Albuquerque and Pittsburgh

As reported recently, voters in Washington and Arizona will decide on November 8 whether those states will be added to the growing list of PSL jurisdictions.  Following these votes, what are the next jurisdictions likely to deal with a PSL law?  Three cities are on the PSL radar screen — Albuquerque, Duluth and Pittsburgh.

In Albuquerque, PSL proponents sought to have PSL put on the county elections ballot on November 8, 2016. As reported, the county rejected the effort to include merely a summary of the PSL bill on the ballot. To paraphrase Ernest Thayer in that baseball classic Casey at the Bat, there is no joy in Albuquerque, PSL proponents have struck out in their efforts to get PSL on the November 2016 ballot. But to use another baseball phrase, there is always next year and the proponents are planning to have it on the ballot in the city elections in November 2017.

In Duluth, in July, the City Council passed a “Resolution Establishing Earned Sick and Safe Time Task Force.”  The eleven-member task force will collect information, hold public hearings, and make recommendations to the City Council concerning sick and safe time.  The Task Force must provide written progress reports to the Council and make its recommendations within 12 months of its first meeting.  Based on this timing, PSL in Duluth will likely be considered in the second half of 2017, at the earliest.

Pittsburgh had passed a PSL ordinance but in December 2015, a judge of the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas held that Pittsburgh did not have the authority to enact such an ordinance and invalidated it.  The city and a union have appealed. Four “friends of the court” have filed briefs in this case. In mid-November, a Pennsylvania appellate court is scheduled to hear argument on the appeal.

It is very likely that the PSL patchwork will have at least 40 patches by the end of 2017!