Layoff-avoidance measure clears Assembly panel

TRENTON – The Assembly Labor Committee this morning released a bill designed to encourage employers who must reduce their employees’ work hours because of economic conditions to avoid layoffs by sharing the remaining work.

Under A3818, this would achieved by permitting, under certain circumstances, a full-time employee to receive unemployment benefits when the employee’s weekly work time is reduced by 10 percent or more. The bill also permits the employee to attend an approved training program while receiving those benefits.

The bill passed with Assemblyman Jay Webber abstaining.

Its sponsor, Assemblyman Paul Moriarty, said that 22 other states have similar programs, and that Rhode Island, for example, avoided 10,000 layoffs over the last few years.

Layoff-avoidance measure clears Assembly panel