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City of Federal Way Passes First of Its Kind Hazard Pay Ordinance; Mayor Says Relief Is on Its Way!

Wednesday, May 5, 2021 - 2:15pm

For immediate release

City of Federal Way Passes First of Its Kind Hazard Pay Ordinance; Mayor Says Relief Is on Its Way!

On May 4th, 2021, the Federal Way City Council Approved Mayor Jim Ferrell’s hazard pay proposal in a 5-2 vote. The ordinance will go into effect on May 15th and last for a period of 90 days, with an initial review of the program on July 6th, 2021.

“I am proud of this collaborative effort,” said Mayor Jim Ferrell. “Working with guidance from the NW Grocery Association, Labor, and small businesses, we developed a program that will cover a significant portion of grocery workers, while still protecting small businesses from the burden of covering the costs of hazard pay,” Ferrell continued.

Ordinance number 21-912 requires hazard pay for hourly grocery workers in grocery locations that dedicate at least 25% of their floor space to grocery sales and are at least 2,500 square foot. Businesses between 2,500 square feet and 10,000 square feet are eligible to apply for a City grant for the reimbursement of hazard pay costs.Grant funds will be provided by the American Rescue Plan Act (AARPA) funds.

Grocery locations of over 10,000 square feet are not eligible for the reimbursement. One of the allowed uses of ARPA funds is the distribution of hazard pay through a City grant program. Federal Way will not receive the first allocation of ARPA until May 10th, but is quickly working to standup a grant program for Council consideration and approval to help small businesses pay hazard pay.

Hazard Pay was initially proposed at $2.50 an hour, but Councilmember Greg Baruso offered an amendment of $3.00 per hour that was ultimately passed.

Federal Way’s ordinance does not cover delivery drivers or convenient stores.

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Steve McNey
253-835-2402