At Tuesday’s Assembly meeting Chairman Felix Rivera and member Forrest Dunbar plan to push a measure dictating to “large” hotels they must offer to rehire workers laid off because of COVID-19 or retain them after changes in owership.
Their proposed ordinance, AO 2020-84(S), would provide “protection for hotel workers’ employment by amending Anchorage Municipal Code with a new chapter requiring large hotel employers to offer rehire to employees laid off in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to retain eligible workers for a period of time after a change in ownership or control, and thereafter consider offering them continued employment….”
Since when does government get to tell employers large or small what they will and will not do when it comes to employment? Is that not the realm of unions and owners? Where is it written that city officials can require employers to rehire workers or keep them on the books, not just after the COVID-19 pandemic, but after a sale or change of ownership?
Perhaps some of our august Assembly got used to the heady notion of dictating policy during their silly ban on plastic bags that also had private businesses charging 10 cents for a bag – and then ordering them to show that on a receipt.
One of the ban’s sponsors said at the time the 10-cent fee was designed to “coerce people to change their behavior.” Now Assembly members are mandating business hiring and retention practices.
We suggest that if Rivera and Dunbar really want to stick their noses into the whozits, whatzits and howzits of hotel hiring and firing they should buy their own hotel and have a field day.
But micro-managing hotels should not be an Assembly function.