Update on COVID Paid Sick Leave

AB 152 (Committee on Budget) COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave passed the Legislature on August 31 and awaits action by the Governor.

The bill establishes the COVID-19 Relief Grant Program within the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) to help qualified small businesses or nonprofits with grants up to $50,000 to reimburse COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave provided between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022.

The bill provides funds for an additional $70 million in grants in addition to the $250 million passed in the budget earlier this year for a total of $320 million.

The bill also extends COVID 19 supplemental paid sick leave provisions from September 30, 2022 to December 31, 2022 to enable employees to take any unused COVID supplemental paid sick leave, keeping the total amount of leave available the same.

AB 152 states that an employer has no obligation to provide additional COVID-19 supplemental paid sick leave if the employee refuses to submit to a test. Employers will be allowed to ask for an additional test between days 5–10 after the first positive test.

As a budget bill, AB 152 will take effect immediately upon being signed by the Governor.