On December 21, 2022 NY Governor Hochul signed the WWPA into law. The act imposes transparency requirements for production quotas and limits the quotas employees at warehouse distribution centers may be required to meet.
The WWPA applies to employers with 100 or more employees at a single warehouse distribution center in the state or 500 or more employees at one or more warehouse distribution centers in the state. Employers were required to provide each employee with a written description of each quota either upon hire or within 30 days of February 19, 2023. Each time the quota changes the employer must provide an updated description within two business days. Additionally, every time an employer takes an adverse employment action against an employee, the employer is required to provide the applicable quota to the respective employee. An employer is prohibited from taking an adverse employment action against an employee for failure to meet a quota that has not been previously disclosed to the employee.
For the purposes of the WWPA, a quota was defined as: (a) an employee assigned or required to perform: at a specified productivity speed; or a quantified number of tasks, or to handle or produce a quantified amount of material, within a defined time period; or (b) an employee’s actions are categorized between time performing tasks and not performing tasks, and the employee’s failure to complete a task performance standard or recommendation may have an adverse impact on the employee’s continued employment or the conditions of such employment.
On March 3, 2023 Governor Hochul signed a bill amending the law. The amendment extends the effective date from 30 days to 180 days from the WWPA’s original February 19, 2023 enactment to June 19, 2023 and also amends several provisions of the law. With the delayed effective date of the WWPA, this means that the deadline for notices is now July 19, 2023. The amendments are:
Employee was amended to clarify that the WWPA applies only to non-exempt employees under the state overtime law, and to exclude “drivers or couriers to or from a warehouse distribution center.”
Employer was amended to increase the threshold for coverage by the WWPA for multiple warehouses across the state from 500 to 1,000 employees in the aggregate. The threshold at a single site sill remains at 100 employees.
Warehouse distribution center was amended to exclude farm product warehouses.
The amendment further requires that notice be given “in the language identified by each employee as the primary language of such employee.” It is unclear at this time if the requirement will be limited to a certain number of languages or if NYS will publish model forms to aid in compliance.
The amendment also repealed many of the recordkeeping requirements and replaces it with a three year recordkeeping requirement for “contemporaneous, true, and accurate records to ensure compliance with employee or commissioner requests for data.”
Employee’s rights to inspect quota records was clarified in the amendments, as follow:
The time for employers to respond to employee requests for records was extended from two business days to 14 calendar days.
Former employees are limited to one request for records under the WWPA.
Employer responses to requests for descriptions of quotas and work speed data are required to be provided in the employee’s primary language.
PMP will keep you updated if any further developments occur.