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CBIA Criticizes Lamont Decision Not to Veto Connecticut Worker Recall Mandate

  • Connecticut Business & Industry Association issues critique of S.B. 658 after Governor Ned Lamont approves the measure over calls to veto it
  • S.B. 658 requires that employers prioritize the rehiring of certain employees who lost their jobs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • CBIA says the measure has inconsistent definitions and forces non-unionized private sector employers to adopt union workforce rules

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

The Connecticut Business & Industry Association has criticized Governor Ned Lamont’s approval of S.B. 658, a bill requiring employers to prioritize the rehiring of certain workers who lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic rather than seeking to hire new, potentially less senior employees. CBIA had advocated that the measure be vetoed, but Lamont signed it into law on July 13.

CBIA says the bill has inconsistent definitions and forces non-unionized private sector businesses to adopt union workforce rules. The organization described it as a “continuation of the effort to remove at-will employment relationships in the state of Connecticut, and goes as far as to create fictional employment relationships to achieve those goals.” CBIA also said the measure will increase the costs of doing business in Connecticut and create negative perceptions of the state’s business climate.

  • S.B. 658 requires hotels, lodging houses, food service contractors, and building service enterprises to prioritize the rehiring of staffers laid off during the pandemic
  • These employers must notify laid-off workers when their previous job, or one they would qualify for with the same training that would be offered to a new hire, becomes available
  • Employees must be rehired with the same classification or job title and substantially the same duties, compensation, benefits, and working conditions, including a job at “substantially the same employment site”
  • The bill won narrow approval in the Connecticut General Assembly, passing 19-15 in the Senate and 75-70 in the House

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