Last week members of the Plymouth City Council voted to extend the COVID Leave Policy till the end of February 20022.
Plymouth City Attorney Sean Surrisi told council members in 2020 the federal government implemented a policy requiring employers to give 80 hours of paid leave. The federal policy expired at the end of 2020 and the City Council voted to create a local policy that mirrored the federal for 2021. Surrisi said that policy is about to end, and he wanted to discuss a provision to at least begin 2022.
Jen Klingerman, the city’s HR Manager said the city currently has two employees out with positive COVID tests. If the policy ends in 2021 then employees will have a hardship. She said one employee doesn’t have any benefits till mid-January so they would be off work without pay.
The City Attorney said the new OSHA standards for employers with more than 100 employees are expected to urge employees to get vaccinated and those who don’t must get tested weekly and wear a mask. Surrisi said the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear testimony on January 7th with a decision to come shortly after.
Surrisi noted that vaccines are widely available for those who have not gotten one yet or those who haven’t become fully vaccinated.
Councilman Jeff Houin said he would like to extend the current policy until the end of February and revisit it after the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the case.
The motion to extend till February 28th unanimously passed.