Implementation of the City of San Antonio’s paid sick leave ordinance has been delayed pending a legal challenge, less than two weeks before the ordinance’s scheduled effective date of August 1, 2019.
On July 15, 2019, the Texas Attorney General and about a dozen business groups filed suit against the City, alleging that the paid sick leave ordinance is unconstitutional because it is preempted by the Texas Minimum Wage Act. In connection with the suit, the groups sought a temporary injunction to stop the ordinance from taking effect as scheduled.
In response, the parties entered into an order agreeing to stay the implementation of the law until December 1, 2019. The order states that the stay is intended to allow the City’s Paid Sick Leave Commission to “confer with stakeholders, study the [paid sick leave] Ordinance, and recommend to the mayor and City Council revisions to the [paid sick leave] Ordinance.”
This is the second time that the Texas Attorney General has succeeded in delaying implementation of a local sick leave law in the state, having intervened in a similar lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the city of Austin’s paid sick leave ordinance. As we previously reported, the Austin ordinance has been stayed since November 2018, pending a decision from the Texas Supreme Court on the constitutionality of the law. As for the state’s third local paid sick leave law, as of now, the Dallas paid sick leave ordinance is not facing a similar legal challenge and is still slated to take effect on August 1, 2019 as scheduled.
We will continue to monitor and report on any further developments with regard to these ordinances.
UPDATE: On July 30, 2019, the Texas Public Policy Foundation filed a lawsuit seeking a preliminary injunction to stop the Dallas ordinance from taking effect until there is a ruling on whether the paid sick leave mandate violates state minimum wage law. We will report on further developments on the Dallas ordinance as they arise.