Senate Bill 331, signed into law by Governor Kasich on December 19, 2016 and effective on March 21, 2017, states that no political subdivision shall establish a minimum wage rate different from the minimum wage set by the state ($8.15 in 2017).
SB 331, originally meant to regulate the sale of dogs from pet stores, was thrust into the political conversation when the minimum wage restriction was added to the bill toward the end of the 2016 legislative session. Further, the law also grants pubic employers the exclusive authority to establish policies concerning hours and location of work, scheduling, and fringe benefits, unless otherwise expressly provided for in state or federal law. Private employers can either do this on their own or through agreements with employees.
The employment related language in SB 331 means that employers, both public and private, only need to concern themselves with the state and federal minimum wage requirements. Private employers also will enjoy greater power to establish workplace policies. However, some local officials across the state have voiced their opposition to the law and may challenge it in state court.
FHKAD attorneys will monitor any legal challenges to the law. If you have any questions regarding this or any other matter, please contact a lawyer at Fishel Hass Kim Albrecht Downey LLP.