HRWatchdog Blog Tracks Updates to Local COVID-19 Ordinances

Since the beginning of the year, local jurisdictions that adopted their own COVID-19 sick leave ordinances in 2020 have been updating and revising their requirements. The HRWatchdog blog, presented by CalChamber, has the details.

Below is a quick rundown of the localities that updated their ordinances. Be sure to visit the individual blog posts for full details.


On January 19, 2021, Oakland’s City Council approved an emergency ordinance extending the city’s emergency paid sick leave (EPSL) ordinance through the duration of Oakland’s March 9, 2020, Declaration of COVID-19 Emergency. Passed on an emergency basis, the revised ordinance took effect immediately, retroactive to December 31, 2020.

See the January 28, 2021 blog post.

Los Angeles County

On January 26, 2021, Los Angeles County revised and extended its COVID-19 paid sick leave ordinance. Los Angeles County’s urgency ordinance took effect immediately upon approval, retroactive to January 1, 2021. The expiration date was extended.

Los Angeles County’s COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave ordinance initially took effect on April 28, 2020, expired on December 31, 2020, and applied only to private-sector employers with 500 or more employees nationally.

As revised and effective January 1, 2021, the ordinance applies to all employers in the unincorporated areas of the county, regardless of size/number of employees. This means that employers with fewer than 500 employees previously exempt (and subject to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)) must follow the local ordinance.

Los Angeles County’s supplemental paid sick leave ordinance will remain in effect until two calendar weeks after the expiration of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors COVID-19 local emergency declaration.

See the February 2, 2021 blog post.

Sonoma County

Sonoma County initially revised and extended its COVID-19 sick leave ordinance on January 26, 2021. The urgency ordinance took effect immediately upon passage and its expiration date was extended.

Sonoma County’s COVID-19 paid sick leave ordinance initially took effect on August 18, 2020, Unlike Los Angeles County, the ordinance is not retroactive.

The revised ordinance extends the expiration date of the ordinance to June 30, 2021. The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors met on February 9, 2021 to vote on a further revised ordinance that includes employers of all sizes

See the February 2, 2021 blog post.

Santa Rosa

On February 2, 2021, Santa Rosa’s City Council adopted a newly revised local urgency ordinance, replacing the initial ordinance that was in place July 7, 2020, through December 31, 2020, and temporarily reinstating COVID-19-related paid sick leave for employees working within Santa Rosa city limits.

The new urgency ordinance took effect immediately on February 2, 2021, and will remain in effect through March 31, 2021, or upon expiration of the applicable federal tax credits related to the FFCRA, whichever is later.

See the February 8, 2021 blog post.

Staff Contact: Bianca Saad

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Bianca N. Saad, a member of the CalChamber legal affairs team since April 2018, was named general counsel, labor and employment, in October 2023. Since mid-November 2021, she has been developing and leading the content and training strategy for existing and emerging products and training, as well as overseeing CalChamber associate general counsel and subject matter experts. She serves as a co-presenter for CalChamber compliance seminars and webinars. Saad brought to the CalChamber legal affairs team the perspective of an employee representative, coming from nearly eight years in private practice as an employment law and litigation attorney. She graduated with honors from the University of Miami with a B.B.A. in business management. She earned her J.D. from California Western School of Law. See full bio