(The Center Square) — Massachusetts employers of all sizes and industries have a new set of rates for the state’s 2-year-old law pertaining to paid family medical leave.

Beginning Jan. 1, maximum weekly benefits increased from the 2022 rate of $1,084.31 to $1,129.82 in the new year.

Employees in Massachusetts can tap into the program for a variety of reasons, including serious health conditions, bonding with a new child, military deployments, and caring for a family member with a serious health condition.

Employer contribution rates into the program are decreasing in 2023, based on a tiered system related to a company or organization’s number of employees.

Massachusetts employers with fewer than 25 qualifying people on payroll will pay into the program at a rate of 0.318%, which is a 0.026% decrease from the 2022 rate of 0.344%. The contribution formula is based on a mixture of 0.208% for medical leave and 0.11% for family leave.

Contribution rates for employers with 25 or more qualifying people on payroll are 0.05% less into PFML in 2023, from the 2022 rate of 0.68% to 0.63%. The 2023 formula for this employer category consists of 0.52% toward medical leave and 0.11% toward family leave.

In the Massachusetts Legislature’s 2022 session, the Democrat-majority House and Senate had introduced other proposed changes to the PFML program, beyond rate changes.

One such amendment on the table – giving employees the ability to augment PFML benefits with other accrued paid leave through traditional vacation and sick days – remains in limbo after Republican Gov. Charlie Baker vetoed the legislation, citing cost concerns and calling for a study of the potential impact.

The Massachusetts House of Representatives overrode Baker’s veto this summer, but the Senate never took it to a vote in the legislative session.

While Baker issued a veto for PFML changes, he was a proponent of the program when it first was introduced in legislation four-and-a-half years ago.

Baker in 2018 signed into law House Bill 4640, also known as the "grand bargain legislation."

Paid family medical leave was one component of HB 4640. Other provisions of the legislation included raising the Massachusetts minimum wage from an hourly rate of $11 to $15 through a series of incremental increases that began in 2019 and conclude this coming year.

The legislation also created a permanent 2-day weekend sales tax holiday that at the time was part of an economic development bill introduced by Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito.

"The Massachusetts workforce continues to grow with more and more people finding jobs, and our administration is committed to maintaining the commonwealth’s competitive economic environment," Baker said in 2018 when he signed the legislation.