Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP Partners Present at the 3rd Annual Massachusetts SHRM State Council Legislative Conference
Attorneys Kathryn Murphy and Kier Wachterhauser, both Partners at Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, presented a legal update and discussion at the 3rd Annual Massachusetts SHRM State Council Legislative Conference last month. Their presentation, titled “Recent Developments Impacting the Workplace: What is Keeping HR Up at Night?”, highlighted many of the ways the pandemic has impacted the workplace throughout 2020 and 2021. Topics discussed were COVID-19 in the workplace, vaccine mandates and exemptions, wage and hour law considerations, time off and leave protections, and the important considerations that employers need to remember, such as the mental health of employees and their families. Other session topics at the conference included “Washington Outlook and HR Policy Update”, “U.S. Department of Labor Update”, a panel on “State Legislative Outlook”, “Massachusetts PFMLA: The First Year a Work in Progress”, “Reopening the Mixed Vax Workplace the Occupational Health View” and “The New Work of Immigration: New Rules and the Impact on Talent Acquisition”.
Ms. Murphy is a Partner at the firm and practices in the employment and labor law areas. She has many years of experience representing employers in matters involving employment discrimination, wage and hour, contracts, whistleblowing, and other employment-related concerns. Ms. Murphy’s practice also focuses upon working proactively with employers to address matters before legal disputes arise. She conducts internal investigations on behalf of employers, provides training, day-to-day counseling in employment areas, development of policies and procedures, and other advisory services. Ms. Murphy obtained a Senior Professional Human Resource (SPHR) certification in 2011, and prior to practicing law, she practiced as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Ms. Murphy graduated cum laude from Suffolk University Law School.
Mr. Wachterhauser is a Partner at MHTL and represents private and public sector clients in all areas of labor and employment law while maintaining a general litigation practice within the firm. He regularly counsels clients on employment matters, including wage and hour, leave entitlements, and discrimination and harassment matters, as well as the drafting of employment policies and contracts, and represents clients in employment-related litigation before state and federal courts and administrative bodies. Additionally, he maintains an extensive labor practice, representing clients in the collective bargaining process, arbitration hearings, and proceedings in front of a variety of administrative agencies. He is a regular speaker at industry and trade groups, chambers of commerce, and other organizations on a wide range of labor and employment topics, and he conducts workplace training for organizations of all sizes. Mr. Wachterhauser received his Juris Doctor from Boston University School of Law, where he served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Boston University Law Review.
Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, Partner Katherine Hesse gave a plenary presentation on Recent Developments in ERISA on Friday September 16 to members of the Group Legal Services Association (“GLSA”) at its annual meeting in New Orleans. Among the topics she emphasized were what employers/plan sponsors need to know in the aftermath of the Dobbs decision overturning Roe v. Wade and lessons from the Court’s decision in Hughes and other class action litigation as to factors to consider Read More
On August 12, 2022, Governor Charlie Baker signed S. 3096, “An act relative to equity in the cannabis industry,” (“Act”) into law. The Act reforms Massachusetts’s existing marijuana laws, particularly with respect to host community agreements (“HCAs”), community impact fees (“CIFs”), and social consumption sites (e.g. marijuana cafes). The Act empowers the Cannabis Control Commission (“Commission”), the state regulatory agency, to exert greater control over HCAs and their CIFs. Municipalities levy CIFs on cannabis businesses to account for the costs they impose on the municipality as a result of their operations. Additionally, the Act allows municipalities to permit on-premises social consumption of marijuana at designated sites. Other notable provisions of the Act include the new Social Equity Trust Fund (“Trust Fund”), changes to the tax law regarding cannabis businesses, and various provisions concerning those persons and communities most impacted by the prior illegality of marijuana usage and sale. Governor Baker vetoed only one section of the final bill: the provision calling on the state to conduct a study of medical marijuana usage in schools.