(July 17, 2023) Six California Chamber of Commerce job killer bills that threaten jobs and, if passed, will increase the cost of doing business in California remain active as state legislators headed home for the summer recess last week.
Two job killer bills, one imposing an onerous return to work mandate and another undermining arbitration, were placed on the Assembly Appropriations Committee Suspense File.
The Legislature will reconvene from summer recess on August 14.
Active Job Killer Bills
The following job killer bills are actively moving in the legislative process:
- AB 524 (Wicks; D-Oakland): Exposes employers to costly litigation under the Fair Employment and Housing Act by asserting that any adverse employment action was in relation to the employee’s family caregiver status, which is broadly defined to include any employee who contributes to the care of any person of their choosing, and creates a de facto accommodation requirement that will burden small businesses. In Senate Appropriations Committee.
- AB 647 (Holden; D-Pasadena): Significantly expands statute related to successor grocery employers, including disrupting ability for independent small stores to join together, expands number of workers covered under the law, and creates a significant new private right of action. In Senate Appropriations Committee.
- SB 399 (Wahab; D-Hayward): Chills employer speech regarding religious and political matters, including unionization. Is likely unconstitutional under the First Amendment and preempted by the National Labor Relations Act. In Assembly Appropriations Committee.
- SB 525 (Durazo; D-Los Angeles): Imposes significant cost on health care facilities and any employer who works with health care facilities by mandating increase in minimum wage to $25. In Assembly Appropriations Committee.
- SB 616 (Gonzalez; D-Long Beach): Imposes new costs and leave requirements on employers of all sizes, by more than doubling existing sick leave mandate, which is in addition to all other enacted leave mandates that small employers throughout the state are already struggling with to implement and comply. In Assembly Appropriations Committee.
- SB 627 (Smallwood-Cuevas; D-Los Angeles): Imposes an onerous and stringent process to hire employees based on seniority alone for nearly every industry, including hospitals, retail, restaurants, and movie theaters, which will delay hiring and eliminates contracts for at-will employment. In Assembly Appropriations Committee.
Job Killers in Suspense
The following bills are already on the Assembly Appropriations Suspense File:
- SB 365 (Wiener; D-San Francisco): Discriminates against use of arbitration agreements by requiring trial courts to continue trial proceedings during any appeal regarding the denial of a motion to compel, undermining arbitration and divesting courts of their inherent right to stay proceedings.
- SB 723 (Durazo; D-Los Angeles): Imposes an onerous and stringent process for specific employers to return employees to the workforce for specified industries, including hotels and restaurants that have been disproportionally impacted by this pandemic, and removes guardrails on existing law by making mandate permanent and significantly broadening the applicability of the law.