Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Keeping Employer Concerns Before Legislators Critical in Last Week of Session

With just one week left before legislators leave Sacramento for the year, major bills having a significant impact on business remain to be voted on by the Senate or Assembly.

Amid the ongoing discussions on many of the bills listed below, it is vital that job creators let their legislators know about the impact of pending proposals.

As California Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Allan Zaremberg has said, “The best lobbyists are a legislator’s constituents, because they know more about their issue than anybody else in California.”

The legislative session ends on Friday, September 13.

Use the CalChamber’s new online advocacy software.

Action Needed

The CalChamber is encouraging members to urge legislators to oppose the following bills:

Job Killer Bills

AB 51 (Gonzalez; D-San Diego): Bans arbitration agreements made as a condition of employment. Banning such agreements benefits the trial attorneys, not the employer or employee. Governor Brown vetoed a similar measure last year and stated it “plainly violates federal law.”

AB 1066 (Gonzalez; D-San Diego): Passed Senate Appropriations Committee with amendments: Allows employees on strike to receive unemployment benefits if the strike lasts more than four weeks, incentivizing strikes, burdening employers, and potentially affecting the solvency of California’s UI fund.

SB 1 (Atkins; D-San Diego): Unnecessarily threatens water supply reliability for millions of Californians and threatens to exacerbate California’s housing crisis and disrupt agricultural operations throughout California.

Other CalChamber-Opposed Bills

ACA 14 (Gonzalez; D-San Diego): Passed Senate Appropriations with amendments: Places an unreasonable contract prohibition on the University of California for support services.

AB 731 (Kalra; D-San Jose): Passed Senate Appropriations with amendments: Imposes a burdensome rate review process for health plans and insurers in the large group market.

AB 1080 (Gonzalez; D-San Diego): Provides CalRecycle with broad authority to develop and impose costly and unrealistic new mandates on manufacturers of all single-use packaging and certain single-use plastic consumer products under an unrealistic compliance time frame. With September 6 amendments, job killer tag removed, but CalChamber still opposes.

AB 1478 (Carrillo; D-Los Angeles): Passed Senate Appropriations with amendments: Significantly amends current law regarding job protected leave for jury duty, victims of a crime, domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking by creating a new private right action for potential employer violations.

SB 54 (Allen; D-Santa Monica): Provides CalRecycle with broad authority to develop and impose costly and unrealistic new mandates on manufacturers of all single-use packaging and certain single-use plastic consumer products under an unrealistic compliance time frame. With September 6 amendments, job killer tag removed, but CalChamber still opposes.

SB 749 (Durazo; D-Los Angeles): Passed Assembly Appropriations with amendments: Unnecessarily requires the disclosure of private employees’ personnel and financial data under the California Public Records Act as well as private employers’ trade secrets.

September 9 Update

AB 1482 (Chiu; D-San Francisco): With September 5 amendments, CalChamber has no position. Before amendments, placed rent caps on all rental housing in the State of California, including new construction, regardless of whether costs from utilities increase or capital improvements were made, thereby disincentivizing maintenance on existing units and new housing construction.

Independent Contractors

AB 5 (Gonzalez; D-San Diego), the main legislative vehicle for revising the California Supreme Court-set test for determining whether a worker is an independent contractor, still needs to include a clear and concise business-to-business contract exemption. Such an exemption would allow two legitimate businesses to contract with one another for professional services, even if the businesses operate in the same industry or the contracted service is part of the other business’s normal or usual operation.

The CalChamber will continue to seek amendments that provide a more progressive approach to applying the court decision (Dynamex Operations West v. Superior Court) to today’s modern workforce.

How to Contact Your Representative

The CalChamber is making it easier than ever to contact legislators through new advocacy software that helps users send letters to representatives, and connect with legislators via phone and Twitter.

The new software is just the first of many new resources coming to the CalChamber Grassroots program. The program is set to relaunch as Impact California in January 2020.

To stay up-to-date on legislation, be notified when new action alerts are uploaded, and gain insight on legislative news and resources, sign up for Action Alerts.

Contacting a legislator is easy. Simply:

• Head to the Action Alerts web page and select the bill on which you would like to express support or opposition.
• Enter the required location information so that the system can determine which representative to contact, and then send the message!
• Repeat the same steps above for tweeting a legislator and calling a legislator through your personal phone.

Once the message has been sent, you can share it through email or social media.

The California Chamber of Commerce is the largest, broad-based business advocate to government in California, working at the state and federal levels to influence government actions affecting all California business. As a not-for-profit, we leverage our front-line knowledge of laws and regulations to provide affordable and easy-to-use compliance products and services.

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