employee benefits

HR REPORT: Paid Family Leave in New Hampshire? A Look at the Granite State Paid Family Leave Plan

Employees generally take “family leave” from their jobs when they need time away to care for a sick family member or to care for a newborn child, and “sick leave” or “medical leave” when they are sick themselves. In New Hampshire, employers are not required to provide employees with paid family or sick leave – employees may be entitled to 12 weeks of job-protected family and medical leave under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), but that leave is unpaid.

Understanding Employee Status

An air traffic controller looks at his screen and sees a bunch of “blips” representing aircraft, each accompanied by a code. By looking at that code, the air traffic controller can tell the status of each aircraft: where it came from, where it is headed, its speed and altitude. This information is of great comfort to the controller, who is responsible for keeping these aircraft safe and staying informed regarding potential hazards. A controller’s worst moment occurs when he sees a “blip” with no explanatory code.

Bullying in the Workplace

Many of us can remember the schoolyard bully who knocked books out of our hands and stole our lunch money. Thanks to RSA 193-F, Pupil Safety and Violence Protection, schools today have more tools to eliminate bullying. But what about bullies at work? What does their behavior look like? What are the implications for the employer? What triggers bullying behavior in the workplace? This article will examine bullying in the workplace, look at recent proposed legislation, and provide some guidance for employers wrestling with this issue.

In Labor Negotiations, Public Employers Need Finance Directors on the Team

Since the passage of the Public Employees Labor Relations Act (RSA 273-A), New Hampshire has seen explosive growth in the number of county, municipal and school district employees who are unionized. Prior to the 1970s, unionization had occurred in only a few New Hampshire communities. Since the adoption of RSA 273-A, it has become common for public employees to unionize as soon as they can form a bargaining unit that meets the minimum statutory requirements of ten regular full or part-time employees, or both, who share a "community of interest."

Words Matter: A Look at Workplace Harassment and Discrimination

"You mean I can't say that?"
"She's just too sensitive!"
"That's not what I meant."

It's likely that at one time or another you, or someone you know, has heard these words from a coworker or supervisor. What you may not have realized, however, is that the speaker could be breaking the law.

Evaluations and Feedback Help Employees and Managers All Year Long

The start of a new year makes many of us consider making resolutions. But it's never too early, or too late, for managers to reflect on an employee's performance over the past calendar year and to set goals for their departments and employees by looking at results from last year. When taking some time to be reflective, managers should be asking themselves the following fundamental questions as they look back on the previous year: How did I do? How did my team perform? Was my department under, over, or within its budget? What did our customers say about us in 2012?

Healthcare Reform Overview

Federal healthcare reform is a source of confusion for many in local government. While many regulations and rules have already been issued by federal agencies, there is much guidance still to be issued and finalized. This article provides a summary of certain provisions of the new federal healthcare legislation and their immediate impact upon employer group health plans through 2013, with a brief summary of future provisions.

Electronic Time Cards Improve Productivity and Data Collection

For at least a decade, corporations, universities, and other large organizations have been using electronic time sheets, saving time and money in payroll and human resources departments and giving managers a quick and thorough accounting of how their employees are spending their time. Electronic time sheets also conserve paper, eliminate the agony of digging through paper files to find old records, and provide a wealth of other information including logs of used sick and vacation time, and other types of absences.

Public Employee Retirement Benefits: Defined Contribution vs. Defined Benefit Plans

Hardly a week goes by without a state or national news story about public employee pension benefits. Within the past few years, national associations and research institutes such as the National Conference of State Legislators, the Pew Research Center, the Center for State and Local Government Excellence, and the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, as well as numerous actuarial consulting firms have released dozens of studies, reports, white papers, issue briefs and summaries about the financial status of public employee pension programs and changes being enacted.

Leave Policies: Personnel Plan Versus State, Federal Laws

Both state and federal laws govern an employee's ability to take time away from work. These include, but are not limited to, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), the New Hampshire Workers' Compensation Law (RSA 281-A), New Hampshire's maternity leave statute (RSA 354:7,VI(b), the New Hampshire law governing reasonable accommodations for disabled employees (RSA 354-A:7, VII), and the state Crime Victim Leave (RSA 275:62).