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Minimum Wage Increase To Begin July 1

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Minimum Wage Increase To Begin July 1
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Next week will be a big one for the city of Flagstaff, when minimum wage increases to $10.50 per hour, a hot-button topic that has garnered strong opinions on both sides.

Once the increase goes into effect on Saturday, July 1, employers in the city and the rest of Arizona will be required to comply with the new minimum wage laws established in Proposition 206, as well as provide sick leave for their employees.

Proposition 206 is also known as the Fair Wages and Healthy Families Act, and it was brought to life by a citizens initiative called Arizonans for Fair Wages and Healthy Families. This law gives employees more support in the workplace, requiring employers to allow their workers to accrue one hour of paid sick leave per 30 hours worked. For employers with fewer than 15 employees, they can accrue up to 24 hours annually, while employers with 15 or more employees can earn up to 40 hours of sick leave. Employers must meet these minimum requirements but can choose to allow a higher limit.

The law allows temporary, part time, and full time workers to be able to accrue sick leave, which can be used for physical or mental illness, medical care, health conditions, a public health emergency, and absence due to domestic violence, sexual violence, stalking or abuse.

Employers can require employees hired after July 1 to work 90 days before starting to accrue sick leave.

There are a few exceptions to Proposition 206: federal and state employers as well as tribal employees on tribal land. However, employers that are based out of state but have employees that perform work in Arizona must follow all provisions of Proposition 206 for those employees.
The law will give employers two options for addressing unused accrued sick time. The first option would allow employees to carry over any unused earned sick hours from year to year. If employers decide not to allow a carry over of unused hours, they can implement the second option, which would require employers to pay for unused earned sick time at the end of the fiscal year. A third option will need to be approved by Governor Doug Ducey before it can be implemented into the law, and it would allow employers to “front load” sick hours at the start of the year, eliminating the accrual requirement. This would allow employers to immediately grant 40 hours (or 24 for a smaller employer) of sick time at the start of the year, and they would not have to carry forward hours or pay employees for unused hours. It could take up to a year before the front loading option is made legal.
Any employer that does not either carry forward hours or pay out the unused earned time will be in violation of Proposition 206.
The city of Flagstaff has created an office of Labor Standards to regulate the minimum wage requirements, while the Industrial Commission of Arizona is responsible for enforcing sick leave rules.
Minimum wage was the subject of major debates and scrutiny, specifically from Elevate Flagstaff, a local group of small business owners seriously concerned about how rising wages would impact their futures.
For more information on Proposition 206, please visit this website to learn more or contact Flagstaff City Council. 

 Visit the official city of Flagstaff website here. 

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