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Sick Leave Measure Fails By A Handful Of Votes

Ryan Hyde via Flickr
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Employers in Albuquerque will not have to offer paid sick leave to workers in the city for the foreseeable future. Sick leave opponents edged out supporters by less than 1 percent. The final tallies in the municipal election rolled in near midnight on Tuesday, Oct. 3. 

It was a super tight race all night.

Tallies from a few vote centers would roll in, and sick leave supporters would pull ahead. Then a few more votes would get counted, and they’d be down a hair.

At the watch party, all eyes were on phone screens as the updates came in every so often.

In the end, a little more than 700 votes squashed the measure. Adriann Barboa, field director for Strong Families New Mexico, helped organize the push for paid leave. "Folks were worried," she said. "We’re a poor city, a poor state. So convincing folks that they deserve something like paid sick leave is something that we’ve been working on for over a year and a half."

With such a small margin, she said they’ll definitely be calling for a recount.

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