Michigan Employment Law Update – July 2015

Jul 22, 2015

Michigan

State Pre-emption of Local Labor Laws

On June 30, 2015, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed into law the “Local Government Labor Regulatory Limitation Act” (H.B. 4052). The law prohibits local governments from adopting and enforcing new ordinances, policies, and resolutions that would regulate the wages, benefits, and other terms and conditions of private employment.

Prohibited regulations

The law prohibits a local government body from adopting, enforcing, or administering an ordinance, local policy, or local resolution regulating the employment relationship between an employer and its employees or potential employees if the regulation contained requirements exceeding those imposed by state or federal law. The law would not prohibit an ordinance, policy, or resolution requiring a criminal background check for an employee in connection with the receipt of a license or permit from a local governmental body.

A local governmental body also would be prohibited from adopting, enforcing, or administering an ordinance, local policy, or local resolution regulating either of the following:

  • Information an employer or potential employer was required to request or require on, or exclude from, an employment application from an employee or potential employee.
  • Work stoppage or strike activity of employers and their employees or the means by which employees could organize.

A local governmental body also may not adopt, enforce, or administer an ordinance, local policy, or local resolution regulating hours and scheduling that an employer was required to provide to employees. This would not prohibit an ordinance, policy, or resolution that limited the hours a business was allowed to operate.

Prohibited Requirements

The law prohibits a local governmental body from adopting, enforcing, or administering an ordinance, local policy, or local resolution requiring an employer to do any of the following:

  • Pay to an employee a wage higher than the state minimum hourly wage rate determined under the Workforce Opportunity Wage Act or, if applicable to the employer, the minimum wage provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, unless those federal minimum wage provisions would result in a lower minimum hourly wage than provided under state law.
  • Pay to an employee a wage or fringe benefit based on wage and fringe benefit rates prevailing in the locality (except with respect to state projects subject to the prevailing wage law).
  • Provide an employee with paid or unpaid leave time.
  • Provide to an employee any specific fringe benefit or any other benefit for which the employer would incur an expense.

A local governmental body is also prohibited from adopting, enforcing, or administering an ordinance, policy, or resolution requiring an employer or its employees to participate in any educational apprenticeship or apprenticeship training program that was not required by state or federal law.

In addition, a local governmental body may not adopt, enforce, or administer an ordinance, policy, or resolution regulating or creating administrative or judicial remedies for wage, hour, or benefit disputes.

The law went into effect upon signing.