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Representative Paul Torkelson
Chair, House Transportation Finance Committee
Welcome to the new regulatory landscape for doing business in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Effective July 1, businesses must conform to local ordinances mandating paid sick and safe time.
The laws govern the same employee benefit, but that’s where the similarity ends. For example, in Minneapolis, the law applies to businesses with six or more employees. In St. Paul, you must comply if you have one employee. The accompanying chart shows the other differences in the laws.
As many of us know, balancing work with the rest of life can be a challenging task. This task is only made worse when working people and their families encounter financial uncertainty or even hardship. In recent years, financial stress and dealing with potential incidents, is one of the biggest causes of stress for working adults, with many households reporting that they are unable to deal with an unexpected expense of $500 (CBS Moneywatch).
Employers who have hired summer interns should keep in mind that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has stated that private sector internships are most often considered "employment" subject to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime rules.
The Test for Unpaid Interns
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) has released a quick-response checklist briefly describing the steps that HIPAA-covered entities (including medical and dental offices) and their business associates should take in response to a cyber-related security incident. Steps include:
- Executing the entity's response and mitigation procedures and contingency plans, such as immediately fixing any technical or other problems to stop the incident;
Under the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) recent General Industry Walking-Working Surfaces and Fall Protection Standards final rule, employers are now required to ensure that workers who use personal fall protection and equipment are trained about fall and equipment hazards, including fall protection systems.
New Training Requirements
The IRS has announced the 2018 inflation-adjusted amounts for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).
Annual Contribution Limitation
For calendar year 2018, the annual limitation on HSA deductions for an individual with self-only coverage under a high deductible health plan is $3,450 (up from $3,400 for 2017). The annual limitation on HSA deductions for an individual with family coverage under a high deductible health plan is $6,900(up from $6,750 for 2017).
Fees to fund the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) are due to the IRS no later than July 31, 2017 from employers who sponsor certain self-insured health plans, including health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) that are not treated as excepted benefits.
How to Pay PCORI Fees