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‘FAMLI’ legislation: Beware consequences of one-size-fits-all mandate

Op-Ed by Loren Furman for

The issue of paid family leave is once again making its way through the Colorado legislature. Senate Bill 188, the Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program, known as FAMLI, was introduced March 7.

Employers in Colorado have long supported workers who may want to take leave from work for medical and family reasons. In fact, many employers currently provide robust paid-leave policies for their employees that can be used for these purposes. It also gives companies a competitive advantage when competing for top talent.

The Colorado Chamber has been open to family-leave proposals that aren’t cost-prohibitive or overly burdensome and that align with current federal laws. Earlier this legislative session, we supported a proposal that would have created an incentive-based, family-leave program in the form of tax benefits.

SB-188 creates a new government-run, one-size-fits-all mandatory insurance program that would be funded by all public- and private-sector employers and workers through a new insurance premium. It offers no exemptions for small businesses or for companies that already offer more generous leave programs.

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