Promote transparency in the on-demand workforce and consider new regulations to accurately classify these workers. The state proactively conducts outreach to gather data on changes in the on-demand labor market, including demographic shifts and consistency of classification law enforcement.

State Program Examples

  • New Jersey

    Taskforce on Employee Misclassification

    In 2018, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy established a Taskforce on Employee Misclassification via executive order. The taskforce explored how state agencies can improve their policies and procedures to address misclassification. In an audit of just one percent of employers found 12,315 instances of misclassification, totaling more than $13 million in lost revenues for the state. The report released by the taskforce in 2019 recommended that “contracting language be strengthened to exclude bad actors who misclassify their employees.”

  • Vermont

    Lower 1099-K Threshold

    Many workers who are required to file a 1099-K do not receive any documentation because they do not make enough money through any one payee. However, this documentation is critical for avoiding underreporting, clarifying tax obligations, and maximizing social security benefit entitlement for retirement for workers, including those who participate in non-traditional and on-demand work. In response, Vermont lowered the threshold for receiving a 1099-K from $20,000 to $600. This revised threshold also benefits the state by bringing in more tax revenue.

  • Colorado

    Study of Independent Contractors and Unemployment Insurance

    The state has prioritized gathering data on the on-demand workforce and identifying opportunities to protect these workers. During the 2020 legislation session, the state legislature passed SB20-207 requiring Office of the Future of Work to study independent contractors and unemployment insurance to inform policy recommendations that support independent contractors. Additionally, as a part of NGA’s State Collaborative Consortium to Understand and Support the OnDemand Workforce, Colorado conducted focus groups of on-demand workers and employers, and published a report on their findings.

  • Missouri

    Interagency Taskforce on Worker Classification

    Missouri Governor Mike Parson signed Executive Order 20-15 creating the Interagency Task Force on Worker Classification between the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Department of Revenue, Department of Commerce and Insurance and the Attorney General to promote the proper classification of Missouri worprkers and create a more prosperous economy. The task force will work collaboratively with business, labor and community groups to assess the effectiveness of existing investigative and enforcement mechanisms for identifying and preventing worker misclassification. The task force will also engage in community outreach campaigns to inform and educate stakeholders on the legal difference between independent contractors and employees and the harms caused by worker misclassification. The task force will report its findings and recommendations to the Governor on an annual basis. A final report will be issued by December 31, 2024, at which point the Task Force will be dissolved. 

  • Montana

    Independent Contractor Workers' Compensation

    In the state of Montana, in order to be an independent contractor, workers must be free from control or direction from the hiring agent and engaged in their own independently established business, occupation, trade, or profession. The contractor may be covered under a self-elected workers' compensation insurance or be approved for a waiver from the Montana Department of Labor and Industry. This process is designed to ensure those doing work under the independent contractor classification meet all of the requirements and that workers are aware of their rights. 

Expand access to worker protections. The state ensures that all workers, including those in non-traditional work arrangements have access the protections and rights that are awarded to many workers under federal regulation like Fair Labor Standards Act and Occupational Safety and Health Act.

State Program Examples

  • New Mexico

    Domestic Service in Minimum Wage Act

    Workers in non-traditional work arrangements, including domestic work, are often excluded from certain worker protections and benefits under statute. In 2019 the New Mexico legislature passed the Domestic Service in Minimum Wage Act to expand the state minimum wage and overtime laws to domestic and home care workers in the state, who were previously exempt.  The law requires that “every person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, receiver or other officer of the court of this state and any agent or officer of any of the above-mentioned classes employing any person in this state” pays any domestic worker at least the minimum wage. This regulation is enforced by the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions. States can examine their worker protections to identify types of workers that may not be covered and revise those protections to ensure those in non-traditional work arrangements are included.

  • New York

    Self-Employment Assistance Program 

    The New York State Department of Labor’s Self-Employment Assistance Program (SEAP), provides the aspiring entrepreneur with the needed tools and resources to start their own small businesses. This program seeks to enable those interested in self-employment to work toward that goal with the help and guidance of business professionals, as well as the financial support of continuing weekly Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits. Delaware, Mississippi and Oregon operate similar programs.

Remove barriers for people seeking new work opportunities. The state enables all workers to take advantage of new opportunities created by technology by removing obstacles to changing jobs and becoming self-employed.

State Program Examples

  • California

    Ban Non-Compete Agreements

    California has long held a ban on the enforcement of compete agreements, unless in rare instances, which some academics credit for the success of the state’s tech industry. Companies that require workers to sign non-competes prohibit workers from working for another company that is considered to be a competitor which can minimize potential for innovation.

  • Illinois

    Freedom to Work Act

    In 2017, the Illinois legislature passed the Freedom to Work Act which prohibits non-compete agreements for workers making less than $13 an hour.  Prohibiting non-compete allows workers to more freely move between jobs which can be a critical way for low-wage workers to move into higher-wage positions.

  • Arizona

    Recognition of Out-of-state Licensure

    In 2019, the Arizona legislature enacted a law, with strong support from Governor Ducey, to validate out of state licenses for qualifying professions. The state now allows workers who hold occupational licenses issued by any other state, who have practiced their licensed profession for at least one year, to practice their profession legally in Arizona. This law enables workers to continue to work without completing duplicative training when they move or commute across state lines. States can assess how their training requirements for certain professions compare to training requirements in other states, especially in high-demand occupations, and extend recognition of licenses that have similar training requirements in other states.

Promote learning and work opportunities for all workers by investing in broadband and entrepreneurship hubs. The state invests in a comprehensive approach to fostering innovation, developing human capital, using local institutions and infrastructure and accessing investment capital to help the entrepreneurial economy thrive in all communities, including rural towns.

State Program Examples

  • Minnesota

    Creation of Entrepreneurial Hubs

    In the town of Red Wing, leaders partnered with the Center on Rural Innovation to raise local funds to match an U.S. Economic Development Agency (EDA) i6 Challenge Grant to fund a $1.7 million regional effort to support entrepreneurs and talent development across an 11-county region in rural Southeast Minnesota. This project expects to advance 30 emerging entrepreneurs, meet the talent needs of 15 employers, and prepare 75 students for the future workforce.

  • West Virginia

    Governor’s School of Entrepreneurship

    In 2015, West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin created the Governor’s School of Entrepreneurship (WVGSE), one of several summer programs designed to promote study of the arts, science, academics and business. WVGSE, a free summer program established through the West Virginia Department of Education and West Virginia University, is a three-week boot camp for 50 high school students that offers students the opportunity to develop entrepreneurial skills. Young innovators are thrown into an “accelerator” atmosphere where they learn about business models, design thinking, startup ventures and then given the chance to pitch their ideas and actually launch a business venture.

  • Pennsylvania

    One-Stop Shop for Entrepreneurs

    In 2018, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf launched the PA Business One-Stop Shop as the sole source for guiding entrepreneurs and small businesses through all stages of development. This One-Stop consolidated several difficult-to-navigate programs serving businesses, from planning and startup to operation and expansion. The program was developed through a partnership between the departments of State, Labor and Industry, Revenue, the Office of Administration, and the Department of Community and Economic Development.

  • Alabama

    Innovation Commission

    In July 2020, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed Executive Order 720, which established Alabama’s first statewide Commission on Entrepreneurship and Innovation, comprised of fifteen state policymakers and executives from prominent employers. The Alabama Innovation Commission, known as Innovate Alabama, will serve as a platform for innovators to engage policymakers, exchange ideas and identify policies that promote innovation in the state. The commission will examine policies to increase entrepreneurship, spur innovation and enhance technology accelerators, in addition to addressing the challenges and red tape that startup companies often face. They also will produce and present a comprehensive innovation policy agenda to the  Governor and the Alabama Legislature. 

Expand access to portable benefits to on-demand workers who are at a greater risk of becoming under skilled. The state promotes labor market dynamism by replacing the outdated workplace-sponsored benefits model with portable benefit models that enables workers to control and keep benefits as they move from job to job or become self-employed. To accomplish this, states should consider which benefits are a priority, who will be eligible, how they will be funded and which entity will be responsible for administration.

State Program Examples

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