Employer Mandates Among Bills Moving in Legislature

When the COVID-19 crisis hit, legislators adopted a self-imposed limit on legislation they would be pursuing this year. Even so, when the summer recess began, significant employer mandates remained alive for consideration when lawmakers return to the State Capitol.

Of 16 job killer bills identified by the California Chamber of Commerce this year, nine still are being actively considered.

Passed by the Senate just before leaving for a brief summer break was legislation that significantly burdens small employers by requiring those with only five employees to provide eligible employees with 12 weeks of mandatory family leave, which can be taken in increments of one to two hours, and threatens these small employers with costly litigation if they make any mistake in implementing the leave.

More litigation exposure for employers also will result if lawmakers adopt a pending COVID-19 employment leave mandate and an expanded bereavement leave mandate.

Also still alive is a proposed headcount tax of $275 per employee that will punish certain employers who create jobs and discourage hiring and employment growth.

Two workers’ compensation bills create an extremely concerning precedent for expanding into the private sector a costly “conclusive presumption” that certain workers contracted COVID-19 in the workplace.

To see the status of these and other key bills the CalChamber is tracking on behalf of members and the business community, see the Status Report.