November 22, 2022
The New Jersey Senate on Monday again postponed a vote on New Jersey’s controversial bill, which among other things would require employees of temporary employment agencies to be paid a salary equal to that of direct employees.
The bill, A-1474, was also withdrawn by the Senate in October because it did not get enough votes to pass. It previously passed both the New Jersey House and Senate, but received a conditional veto from Gov. Phil Murphy in September, who sent it back to the legislature with proposed changes. However, the proposed changes fell far short of what the staffing industry had hoped, including removing the equivalent language.
Senator Joe Cryan, a Union County Democrat who sponsored the bill, said at the statehouse in Trenton that the bill did not get the 21 votes needed to pass it, northjersey.com reported. He declined to say why the bill didn’t get the votes or which of his peers were holdouts.
Senate President Nicholas Scutari, D-Union, confirmed he would try the bill again in December, as did Cryan. The Senate is not expected back for another voting session until December 22.
Alexis Bailey, vice president for government affairs for the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, said the association continued to object to a key provision that requires agency workers to be paid the average rate of compensation and the cash equivalent of the average cost of benefits paid to their peers Employee.
“As a result, some temporary workers will earn more than permanent employees, whose wages are determined by seniority and experience,” Bailey said. “There are also many logistical burdens to consider when temp agencies contract with multiple companies that offer different benefit packages. All of this will contribute to making it extremely difficult for temporary workers to find jobs.”
The American Staffing Association has “worked very hard” after the initial delay to reiterate its concerns about the legislation and to speak about its alternative bill S-3182, which parallels the current Toby Malara Temporary Workers’ Right-to-Know Act in Massachusetts is very similar, Vice President of Government Relations at the ASA, told Staffing Industry Analysts.
“It’s something that we believe will not only offer workers the protection that A-1474 offers, but our version also doesn’t have the operational concerns that led us to appeal this law, so we think it’s a really good compromise,” Malera said.
The ASA has been working with senators on its alternative bill with positive results, and will continue to do so now that the vote has again been delayed.