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Weekend Roundup: Sick Leave Ordinance, Nevada Nixes Marijuana Testing, Trucking Industry Reform

Employers in San Antonio and Dallas need to be prepared to comply with a new sick leave ordinance for employees who work at least 80 hours per year in their respective cities. A violation of the ordinance can cost employers a $500 fine. A law is expected to go in effect January 2020, makes Nevada the first state in the U.S. to ban pre-employment marijuana drug testing. The Trucking Alliance, a group of the nation’s largest trucking companies calls for stricter regulations when it comes to drug testing. Click the headlines below to get all the details in today’s Weekend Roundup:

Paid sick leave ordinances in Dallas and San Antonio take effect August 1

Employers should be prepared to comply with new paid sick leave ordinances as of August 1, 2019, in both Dallas and San Antonio. Penalties will be $500 per violation. A third ordinance in Austin, nearly identical to the others, is currently being challenged in court.

Since February 2018, three cities in Texas—Austin, San Antonio, and Dallas—have passed paid sick leave ordinances. Initially, it appeared almost certain that the Texas legislature would pass a law preventing the ordinances from taking effect but failed to do so by the close of session on May 27. While there has been talk of calling a special session to address the issue, it has not yet happened and would be an extreme measure.

Nevada becomes first state in the U.S. to ban pre-employment marijuana drug testing

Last week, Nevada became the first state in the United States to ban nearly all pre-employment drug testing for marijuana. The law is expected to go into effect in January 2020, three years after the state legalized cannabis for recreational use.

Democratic Governor Steve Sisolak signed the bill into law on June 5 following the legislation’s smooth passage in the state Assembly and Senate. In a statement, Sisolak said that the law benefits Nevadans while maintaining “common-sense exceptions” for certain jobs.

“As our legal cannabis industry continues to flourish, it’s important to ensure that the door of economic opportunity remains open for all Nevadans. That’s why I was proud to sign AB132 into law, which contains common-sense exceptions for public safety and transportation professionals,” Sisolak said.

Trucking Alliance continues press for drug testing reforms

The Trucking Alliance, a coalition of some of the country’s largest trucking companies, again on Wednesday called for stricter drug testing for applicants for truck driving jobs, as well as a mandate for speed limiters in heavy trucks and a prohibition on under-21 drivers operating interstate.

In comments filed to the House’s Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, as it begins preliminary prep work on the next federal highway bill, the Alliance said that urine tests — the standard test required by the U.S. DOT for driver applicants — fail to properly screen applicants for drug use.

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