On October 30, 2015, the Jersey City mayor approved a change to the city’s existing paid sick leave law (Ordinance 15.145), purportedly to bring the sick leave ordinance more in line with those of other New Jersey cities that have since passed their own paid sick leave ordinances. One major change is that the law will require employers with fewer than 10 employees to allow workers to accrue up to 24 hours of paid sick time and up to 16 hours of additional unpaid sick time annually—except for healthcare workers, food service workers, and child care workers who care for small children, all of whom are entitled to up to 40 hours of paid sick time per year. Prior to the change, such small businesses were only required to provide employees with the ability to accrue up to 40 hours of unpaid time off.

The change increased the maximum fines for noncompliance from $1,250 to $2,000 per infraction. Additionally, like paid sick leave ordinances elsewhere in New Jersey, the updated law exempts certain employees covered by collective bargaining agreements.

The ordinance will take effect on December 29, 2015, 60 days after the mayor signed it.