Last week, a group of businesses and statewide organizations announced a lawsuit against a new ordinance by the City of Austin which mandates that every business within city limits provides sick pay for its employees. Now, the State’s top lawyer is joining in.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced today he was joining the lawsuit, led by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, in order to combat the new anti-business policy. In the filing, Paxton argues that minimum wage—and paid time off policies—are decisions left solely at the hands of the state legislature, and not individual municipalities.
“The Austin City Council’s disdain and blatant disregard for the rule of law is an attempt to unlawfully and inappropriately usurp the authority of the state lawmakers chosen by Texas voters and must be stopped,” said Paxton.
The mandate, passed in February and scheduled to take effect October 1, requires businesses, large and small, to provide up to six days of paid sick leave per year for their employees, a requirement which could have dire consequences for many local businesses already operating on razor-thin margins.
TPPF has requested a court hearing for May 29, as well as a temporary injunction to prevent the ordinance from taking effect.