Legislation that would require Louisiana businesses to provide employees with paid leave to deal with family or medical issues cleared its first legislative hurdle. The Senate Labor committee approved the measure on a 4-to-1 vote after hearing about the benefits of the proposal. This new dad believes it’s a great idea…

“My wife and I were fortunate that we have jobs and we have employers that allowed us to take time off to be with our daughter. That means so much and that should be the rule instead of the exception.”

The measure heads to Senate Finance because it requires a small payroll tax paid by both the employee and employer. The revenue would create a fund within the Louisiana Workforce Commission to provide the temporary paid leave.

Bossier City Senator Barrow Peacock says businesses could be left paying higher taxes if there’s not enough money to cover all the requests for paid family leave…

“We are going to go to them and say we are going to increase your portion even though you have kept it. Currently, in the bill, there is going to be someone who picks up that difference. “

Peacock was the only “no” vote in Senate Labor. Dawn Starns state director of the National Federation of Independent Business also objects to the measure…

“Business owners do the best that they can with best work scenarios for their workers and don’t really appreciate government trying to tell us how to go about that.”