(April 21) – A bill by Rep. Jessie Danielson, D-Wheat Ridge, to put an end to the secrecy around companies found guilty of wage theft passed the House Judiciary Committee unanimously this afternoon. Wage theft refers to the illegal practice of paying employees less than they deserve by requiring employees to conduct work off the clock, violating minimum wage, not paying overtime or other violations of labor laws.
Under current law, if a company has violated wage law, it is interpreted as a “trade secret.” As a result, this information in shielded from the public.
HB16-1347, the Wage Theft Transparency Act, ends that classification and allows the information to be publicly available.
“Employers who are guilty of violating wage laws should not be shielded from public scrutiny,” said Rep. Danielson. “The Wage Theft Transparency Act ends the classification of wage theft as a ‘trade secret’ and allows information about these bad actors to be made public. This information is necessary to protect the people of Colorado who work so hard to earn their paychecks.”
A representative from Colorado Association of Commerce & Industry (CACI) testified that the organization is neutral on the bill, indicating that this measure will have no negative impact on business.
The 11-0 vote sends the bill to the House floor.