A Maryland bill that would have incentivized employers to shift to a shorter workweek has been pulled from consideration, lawmakers confirmed to HR Dive Tuesday.
The bill would have created a pilot program wherein employers would receive a state income tax credit of up to $750,000 per fiscal year if they move at least 30 employees from a five-day workweek to a four-day workweek without reducing pay or benefits. Local media pointed to cost concerns.
“Senator Hettleman and I withdrew HB181/SB197 because we anticipate the Department of Labor will study this issue over the interim,” Del. Vaughn Stewart (D) told HR Dive in a statement.
Sen. Shelly Hettleman (D) also confirmed that supporting lawmakers intend to request the Maryland DOL assess how many businesses already use a four-day workweek, how feasible it would be to provide technical assistance to interested businesses and how feasible it would be to move to a 35-hour workweek for state government jobs.
“We’re hopeful that this analysis will inform future legislation, and that Maryland will lead the nation toward a future with more free time,” Stewart said.
More employers are interested in trying out a four-day workweek or other ways of building in more flexibility to work time, experts previously told HR Dive, especially in the wake of the pandemic.