TRA statement on SCOTX decision on Austin PSL

Late on Friday, June 5th, the Texas Supreme Court issued its decision not to hear the city of Austin’s paid sick leave case (PSL), meaning the Austin ordinance is unconstitutional and voided. The city’s ordinance was struck down as unconstitutional by Texas’ Third Court of Appeals in 2019. Therefore, because the Supreme Court declined to hear the case, the Third Court’s ruling stands. 

Texas retailers are pleased the Texas Supreme Court has confirmed the Third Court of Appeals’ ruling on the Austin PSL ordinance. We continue to believe that one size fits all local employment ordinances are unconstitutional, as ruled by the Third Court of Appeals. These mandated employment ordinances are burdensome and hurt job growth. Most retailers in Texas provide quality wage and benefit packages including paid time off. 

Texas courts have been clear in stating that cities in Texas do not have the power to mandate paid sick leave. Texas retailers call on other cities in Texas with PSL ordinances to withdraw these unconstitutional ordinances. Lastly, although Friday’s decision was welcome news for Texas retailers in Austin, it’s clear PSL, as well as other anti-business issues will need to be taken up during the next session of the Texas Legislature, so that retailers can have certainty statewide.

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