The state Senate has given final approval to a bill authorizing 12 weeks of paid family leave for teachers and other state government workers.
The measure was approved 16-4 Wednesday despite concerns about hardships on school districts who would need to find long-term substitutes for teachers on extended maternity leave.
The bill now goes to Democratic Gov. John Carney for his signature and will make Delaware one of only a handful of states offering paid family leave.
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The bill allows a state worker employed for at least a year to take three months of paid maternity or paternity leave upon the birth of a child or the adoption of a child age 6 or younger.
Analysts estimate the benefit will cost state and local taxpayers more than $5 million annually.