Labor Bills Would Fundamentally Change Vermont Employment Practices

Several labor bills were on the table this week in the Senate Economic Development, Housing, and General Affairs Committee, including legislation that would no longer designate Vermont as an “at-will” state by creating and lengthy and rigorous standard of termination of employment and requiring severance payments. This would make Vermont only one of two states that require a good cause termination process.  

Additional provisions in the bill would allow employees to skip an informational meeting during work hours that involves political or union discussions. Additionally, the committee discussed a bill that would increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. The Department of Labor testified about worries that this can lead to an increase in wage compression within an employer. The bill also includes a study on tipped wages.