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PBA Government Affairs Update

Posted: June 26, 2009

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Mandatory paid-leave legislation, known as the Healthy Families Act, was recently introduced in Congress and requires employers to provide seven paid sick days per year to workers to care for their own or a family member's medical needs. This applies to employers with 15 or more employees. PBAs position opposes the mandatory paid sick leave because it assumes that small business owners do not provide flexible leave policies and forces owners to implement policies that may not be in the best interest of their company or their employees. Update: Legislation currently has 100 Democratic co-sponsors. Likely to see legislative action in 2009 as sponsors may consider pairing legislation with pending health care reforms.

Congress may tackle credit card interchange fees

For years, small businesses, such as spas, have been waging a war with credit card companies over interchange fees, which are a percentage of each transaction collected from merchants every time a credit/debit card is used to pay for a purchase. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has been ordered by Congress to study the use of credit by consumers, and in particular, the effect that interchange fees have on consumers and merchants. Update: The GAO is to report its findings to Congress in six months, along with any recommendations for legislation.