Paid Family & Medical Leave Act fails by 34-36 vote

Roundhouse Rundown: Guns control proposals, paid family medical leave

New Mexico lawmakers are not wasting the limited time they have left. The legislative session ends Thursday at noon.

SANTA FE, N.M. — After a big win in the Senate Friday night and another stamp of approval from a House committee Monday morning, it seemed this could be the year the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act finally crosses the finish line.

It was heard on the House floor Wednesday, but lawmakers rejected the proposal on a 34-36 vote.

Senate Bill 3 was meant to give all New Mexico workers paid time off when they need it most – even if their jobs don’t currently offer it.

Workers would have been able to take up to 12 weeks of paid time off to bond with a new child or grieve the death of a child.

Workers would have been able to take nine weeks off in order to care for themselves or family members dealing with serious medical issues. There was also a “safe leave” category for employees recovering from domestic violence.

As for funding, both employees and employers with more than five workers would contribute to a state fund to pay the workers on leave. For every $1,000 in wages, it would cost $5 for workers and $4 for employers.

Opponents of the bill said 12 weeks off is just too much for most businesses to manage and argued the list of qualifying circumstances was too broad.

This is a developing story. Stay with KOB 4 Eyewitness News and for updates.