COLUMBUS - 

State Representative Mike Duffey (R-Worthington) today announced that Sub. House Bill 37, also known as SharedWork Ohio, legislation to help prevent layoffs across the state has passed the House and is now being sent to Governor Kasich for his signature.


HB 37, which Rep. Duffey sponsored, creates SharedWork Ohio, a program that provides Ohio employers with an alternative to layoffs. Rather than layoff a set number of workers in order to cut costs, employers instead choose to reduce the number of hours worked for a specific group of employees. Those workers earn normal pay for regular hours, but collect unemployment for the hours they no longer work.


Workers retain both their healthcare and retirement benefits under a shared work program. The bill is supported by the Ohio Chamber, Ohio Manufacturer’s Association, the NFIB, the United Way of Central Ohio and a group called Policy Matters.


"SharedWork Ohio saves jobs by preventing layoffs," said Duffey. "Employers have the option to choose shared work over a traditional layoff, and in doing so, they will be rewarded with lower unemployment premiums than if they did a layoff. For workers, it's the difference between losing a job and keeping one. This is common sense."


Unlike traditional layoffs, which result in significantly higher unemployment premiums for affected employers, SharedWork Ohio costs less for Ohio employers as the result of reimbursements from the federal government that exists until 2015. This provides Ohio employers with a clear financial incentive to choose shared work over traditional layoffs beyond the natural incentive of keeping talented workers.


“I am pleased Representative Duffey’s bill is on the way to the governor’s desk. His goal is to keep hard-working Ohioans on the job and that’s exactly what SharedWork Ohio will do while allowing workers to maintain their benefits,” said U.S. Congressman Pat Tiberi (R-OH). “By supporting The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 when it passed the U.S. House of Representatives and became law, we ensured federal funds are available to help these shared work programs in Ohio and in states across the country. I look forward to following the outcome of this program.”


Under SharedWork Ohio, participating employers must submit a plan to the director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. The plan must be in lieu of layoffs and cannot exceed the total unemployment cost of a traditional layoff.


When signed into law, Ohio will join 25 other states as well as the District of Columbia in passing shared work laws to help cope with unemployment.

 
 
 
  
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