DC lawmakers approve generous paid family leave benefit

AP News
Posted: Dec 06, 2016 7:13 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — District of Columbia lawmakers have voted to impose a new tax on businesses to create one of the nation's most generous paid family leave programs.

The bill would provide more than half a million private-sector workers with up to eight weeks of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child.

Advocates hailed Tuesday's 11-to-2 vote as a landmark, noting that dozens of nations guarantee family leave to their workers.

Critics cited its costs, its uncertain effect on small businesses and the fact that more than 60 percent of those who would get the benefits live in Maryland and Virginia. Democratic Mayor Muriel Bowser has not said whether she would sign the bill, but the 11-to-2 margin would be veto-proof if it holds when the council takes its final vote in two weeks. Congress could still block the legislation.