Public hearing held on DC's paid family leave proposal

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A proposal to require private employers in the nation's capital to provide 12 weeks of paid family leave will get a hearing in the D.C. Council.

Democratic Council Chairman Phil Mendelson has said he expects the council to approve a paid-leave bill, but the specifics will depend on whether the program can pay for itself.

The bill calls for the benefit to be funded by a 1 percent payroll tax. Mendelson scaled back the proposed benefits amid concerns that the tax would be insufficient. Nonetheless, it would still be one of the most generous paid-leave requirements in the nation, giving workers time off for the birth of a child, a medical condition or caring for a sick relative.

More than 140 witnesses are expected to testify at Thursday's hearing.