Previous Costly Family Leave Bills Have Failed on Bi-Partisan Votes

The Colorado Chamber of Commerce has been monitoring Senate Bill 188, the Family and Medical Leave Insurance (FAMLI) bill, which will receive its first committee hearing this afternoon.

The bill requires all public and private sector employers and workers to participate in and finance a family and medical leave program that would be administered by the Colorado Department of Labor & Employment.

Colorado employers have long supported their employees who want to take leave from work for medical and family reasons. The FAMLI bill, however, is the wrong approach. Similar bills have been attempted in previous legislative sessions and have died on bi-partisan votes.

A major problem with this legislation is the long-term cost for every worker and employer in the state. The price tag on the current bill is steep – FAMLI would be a $1 billion per year program.

Overview of Similar Bills from Previous Years:

Senate Bill 196 (2014)

Fiscal Impact: nearly $500 million per year after four years. This bill died on a bi-partisan vote.

House Bill 1258 (2015)

Fiscal Impact: $405,000 for an actuarial analysis of the bill – undetermined cost for future years. This bill died on a bi-partisan vote.

House Bill 1307 (2017)

Fiscal Impact: $500 million per year after two years.

House Bill 1001 (2018)

Fiscal Impact: $599 million to $1.8 billion per year after four years.

The fiscal note on the current FAMLI bill is about $1 billion per year – money that could be spent paying for transportation, health care and education. This expensive bill is the wrong approach for Colorado.