Legislative Update: Arizona and Colorado

With the Colorado and Arizona Legislatures no longer in session, below is a roundup of bills that passed. Most of the Colorado bills now await Gov. Polis’s signature. Employers Council will provide more information in coming weeks.

AZ SB 1211: Strengthens background checks for care facilities for those with intellectual disabilities. Took effect April 24, 2019.

CO HB19-1025: Ban the Box. The prohibition on advertisements and applications starts September 1, 2019, for employers with 11 or more employees, and September 1, 2020, for all employers. Exceptions for public employers. Employers Council has compliant application forms on our website.

CO SB19-188: As reported previously, the Family Medical Leave Insurance Program (“FAMLI”) became a study of paid family leave best practices to be completed by January 1, 2020. However, it maintains effective dates in 2020 and beyond for the actual program to commence.

CO SB19-085: Equal Pay for Equal Work. Creates a cause of action for disparity in wage rates, with exceptions. Bans asking about salary history in hiring. Provides a defense against liquidated damages if disparity was made in good faith as evidenced by a comprehensive pay audit performed within two years prior. Takes effect January 1, 2021.

CO HB19-1210: Repeals prohibition on local minimum wages. Provisions allow for local minimum wages above the state minimum with a cap at $1.75 or 15 percent each year. The executive director of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment must report every year on what the laws are in the state. There is also a prohibition on additional raises after 10 percent of local governments have enacted a higher rate, pending action by the Legislature. Takes effect January 1, 2020.

CO HB19-1189: Revises garnishment laws. Reduces amount of wages subject to garnishment and adds exception for health care costs. Spells out means by which to contest a garnishment order and provides more time. Takes effect August 2, 2019, for garnishments issued after October 1, 2020.

CO HB19-1254: Current law authorizes an employer to require employees to share gratuities if the employer posts a sign in a conspicuous place. The bill changes this law by requiring notification to each patron in writing, such as on the menu, table, or receipt. Takes effect August 2, 2019.

CO HB 19-1267: Classifies intentional failure to pay wages as felony theft. Takes effect January 1, 2020.

CO SB19-238: Modifies Colorado Medical Assistance Act for home care agencies to mandate a minimum percentage of their reimbursements be paid in wages for direct caregivers and to enforce training. Takes effect when Gov. Polis signs.

CO HB19-1105: Allows advance-practice nurses with prescriptive authority to be fully paid under Workers Compensation Act, but only physicians can determine Maximum Medical Improvement. Takes Effect August 2, 2019.

CO HB 19-1166: Alters many Colorado statutes with required background checks to add the requirement of a name-based background check to fingerprint checks if record of arrest but no disposition. Will take effect when Gov. Polis signs.

CO SB19-177: Strengthens background check requirements for people who work with children. Takes effect August 2, 2019.