Utah lawmakers place paid parental leave bill on hold

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SALT LAKE CITY (News4Utah)- The House Business and Labor Committee voted 11 to 1 to hold the “Family Leave Amendments” bill Thursday.

The bill would grant six weeks, or up to 240 hours of paid parental leave ,for state employees in the executive branch and state higher education, technical colleges, and board of education employees.  Sponsor of the bill, Rep. Elizabeth Weight said it is needed for the state to remain competitive.

“Utah cares about family values. We need to enact legislation that upholds those values. Parental is an essential part of the healthy development of a newborn, the well-being of mothers, and the critical involvement of fathers in the raising of children,” bill sponsor Rep. Elizabeth Weight said.

Under the bill, employees would be eligible to receive sustained pay during leave after a year of full-time employment. Those who take the leave would be assured of returning to the same or equivalent position.

Rep. Weight said parental leave reduces  turnover and dramatically reduces retraining costs.

 “We shouldn’t force mothers and fathers to choose between their children and their employment,” she said.

The LDS Church, our military, Salt Lake City, and RioTinto have recently adopted paid parental leave provisions, she said.

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 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...