May 22, 2019

Crapo to Serve on Bipartisan Working Group on Family Leave Policies

As member, Crapo will work to review and improve 25-year-old federal family leave policies

Washington, D.C. – Families and parents today are operating under a law that hasn’t been updated in 25 years, and it is past time to review and improve federal leave policies under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).  Citing rising childcare costs as a burden on many families and parents who work outside the home, Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) announced today the formation of a bipartisan working group to discuss federal family leave policies.  U.S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), a member of the Committee, will serve on the working group. 

“Family-friendly policies allow businesses to attract and retain high quality employees,” said Senator Crapo.  “I look forward to working with this bipartisan group of my Senate colleagues to discuss a fiscally sustainable path forward that empowers families inside and outside the home, and allows businesses to succeed.” 

Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-Louisiana) and Maggie Hassan (D-New Hampshire) will serve as co-chairs of the working group.  Senators Tim Scott (R-South Carolina), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nevada), Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania), Todd Young (R-Indiana) and Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) will serve as members.  Senators Grassley and Wyden will serve as ex-officio members. 

The family leave working group will meet regularly and devise a list of principles on which all members reach agreement by consensus. Members will consider:

  • Existing family leave plans and any gaps in coverage;
  • The appropriate federal role in making family leave more widely available;
  • The type of benefit, criteria for eligibility, wage replacement rate, protections for workers and other parameters of coverage;
  • Potential funding mechanisms and potential offsets; and
  • The possibility of reaching consensus on legislation in this area. 

The Senate Finance Committee has jurisdiction over federal tax policy and significant federal health care policy. The working group will consider ideas and principles relating to the issue of family leave and will also consider existing legislation introduced by several senators on and off the committee and from both parties.