Thursday, March 24, 2011

Wisconsin Court of Appeals Upholds Milwaukee's Paid Sick Leave Ordinance

In a huge victory for employees who work in the City of Milwaukee, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals issued its decition in METROPOLITANMILWAUKEE ASSOCIATION OF COMMERCE, INC., v. CITY OF MILWAUKEE & 9TO5 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OFWORKINGWOMEN,MILWAUKEE CHAPTER, Appeal No. 2009AP1874-AC.

If you recall, this appeal concerned an ordinance providing paid sick leave for employees within the City of Milwaukee that was enacted pursuant to the direct legislation statute, WIS. STAT. § 9.20 (2009-10). Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC) filed this action challenging the ordinance on statutory and constitutional grounds. The circuit court granted summary judgment and injunctive relief in favor of MMAC, concluding the ballot statement did not comply with § 9.20(6) and that certain provisions in the ordinance were not rationally related to the City’s police powers and were not severable from the rest of the ordinance. The Court of Appeals wholly disagreed with the circuit court and held that the proponents of the ordinance, not MMAC, are entitled to summary judgment and reverse and remand with directions to grant summary judgment in favor of 9to5 and to vacate the permanent injunction.

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