In addition to the (hopefully) sunny days of summer, July 1 of this year brings with it a host of legislative changes that will impact employers and their employees. Here are three of the most critical employment changes that you'll want to know about.
Oregon Transit Payroll Tax
Effective July 1, 2018, the new statewide employee transit tax (House Bill 2017) goes in effect. Employers must calculate the tax on employees' gross wages prior to any deductions or exemptions. The tax is equal to one-tenth of one percent. All Oregon residents (regardless of where work is performed), as well as nonresidents who perform services in Oregon, are subject to the transit tax.
Employers who do not withhold the tax from employees are subject to a $250 per employee penalty (up to $25,000) for each tax period. Employers are responsible for remitting tax payments on or before the last day of the month following the previous calendar quarter (first payment will be due by October 31, 2018). The following forms are now available:
Form OR-STT-1, Oregon Quarterly Statewide Transit Tax Withholding Return
Form OR-STT-2, Statewide Transit Tax Employee Detail Report
Form OR-STT-A, Oregon Annual Statewide Transit Tax Withholding Return
Form OR-STT-V, Oregon Statewide Transit Tax Quarterly Payment Voucher and Instructions
HB 2017 has been created to fund a statewide transportation package and also includes a bicycle excise tax, vehicle privilege tax, and a vehicle use tax. For additional information please visit the Oregon Department of Transportation website.
Oregon Minimum Wage Increase
Proceeding as it did one year ago, Phase 4 of the annual Oregon Minimum Wage increases that were enacted in 2016 is set to take effect July 1, 2018. The current minimum wage range is $10.00–$11.25. The new rates will be $10.50 in Nonurban Counties, $10.75 for Standard, and $12.00 for Portland Metro. If you are unsure which rate applies, we advise using the Minimum Wage Rate Summary provided on the Oregon.gov webpage. While on this webpage, you also may want to print out and post the new Wage Poster.
Oregon Predictive Scheduling Law
We released a blog in January titled New year, new laws! What’s your scheduling solution? in which we first informed you of the new predictive scheduling law (SB 828) that was passed on August 8, 2017 for non-salaried employees (temporary or leased workers are not included). Oregon was the first state to enact scheduling protection laws for the service industry. It requires certain large employers (500+ employees) to give employees advance notice of their work schedules and time to rest between shifts. The scheduling portions of the law go into effect July 1, 2018. Employers should review their record-keeping policies and scheduling practices.