Statement on Passage of Paid Sick Leave Ordinance by City of Dallas

Published 1:01 pm Wednesday, April 24, 2019

PRESS RELEASE — “The time is now for the Legislature to make employment regulations consistent across the state.”

AUSTIN—The Alliance for Securing and Strengthening the Economy in Texas (ASSET) released the following statement regarding today’s passage of an ordinance to regulate paid sick leave by the city of Dallas.

“Today’s action by the city of Dallas is proof that local employment ordinances are the biggest threat to Texas jobs and future prosperity for our state. Even as the Legislature is considering common-sense bills to streamline employment regulations, local bureaucrats are launching a power grab to force burdensome regulations on the job creators that fuel their communities,” ASSET Spokeswoman Annie Spilman said. “Without the passage of Senate Bills 2485, 2486, 2487 and 2488, cities will be emboldened to further expand this web of red tape, which will strangle job creation and rob Texas families of economic opportunity. The time is now for the Legislature to pass these bills to make employment regulations consistent across the state.”

The Dallas ordinance mirrors one passed in Austin that has been blocked by the courts and is one of the most onerous in the nation. The ordinance makes paid sick leave mandatory for all private sector employers regardless of size or the number of employees, and affects anyone doing business within the city limits regardless of where the company is headquartered. Under the ordinance:

  • Employees earn one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked with no limit.
  • Businesses must provide paid sick leave to all employees who work at least 80 hours in a calendar year, including temporary workers and those working through an employment agency.
  • The ordinance gives the city subpoena power over private businesses’ employment records.
  • Failure to fully comply could result in civil penalties or fines.

In addition to Dallas and Austin, San Antonio enacted an almost identical policy late last year regulating private employment practices. Houston and Austin have also included private employment regulations atop their city platforms for 2019.

State leadership has made it a priority this legislative session to protect Texas jobs and ensure the state has consistent employment regulations. Senate Bills 2485, 2486, 2487 and 2488 have passed the Senate and are pending in the House.

An inconsistent patchwork of employment regulations creates compliance issues and bureaucratic hurdles for employers of all sizes that operate in multiple jurisdictions across the state. Streamlined, statewide employment regulations allow job creators to spend less time dealing with government bureaucracy—including differing and multiplying local policies, paperwork, city administrators, penalties, fines, employee handbooks and more—and more time investing in their employees, their businesses and their communities.

ASSET is a non-profit coalition of job creation organizations that fights for policies that fuel the engines of our economy and protect Texas businesses from invasive and burdensome government regulations. ASSET collectively represents millions of employers and employees in the Lone Star State who believe employment and business operational decisions are best left to private employers, not government. For more information, please visit