Legislature Returns from Summer Recess to Consider Job Killer Bills

The California State Assembly and Senate return today from their month-long summer recess and will consider the remaining job killer bills over the next several weeks.

The next significant deadline for the job killer bills is August 17, the date by which fiscal committees must send the bills along for consideration by the entire Senate or Assembly.

In addition, seven tax-related job killer bills remain alive because they were not subject to the July 6 deadline for bills to pass policy committees and move to fiscal committees. Although they still are eligible for consideration, they are not set for hearings at this time.

Job Killer Bills

Two Senate job killer bills and one Assembly job killer bill remain active.

The California Chamber of Commerce has identified 28 job killer bills to date.

The following job killers are still moving:

  • AB 3080 (Gonzalez Fletcher; D-San Diego) Ban on Settlement Agreements and Arbitration Agreements —  Significantly expands employment litigation and increases costs for employers and employees by banning settlement agreements for labor and employment claims as well as arbitration agreements made as a condition of employment, which is likely preempted under the Federal Arbitration Act and will only delay the resolution of claims. Banning such agreements benefits the trial attorneys, not the employer or employee.
  • SB 1284 (Jackson; D-Santa Barbara) Disclosure of Company Pay Data —  Unfairly requires California employers to submit pay data to the Department of Industrial Relations, creating a false impression of wage discrimination or unequal pay where none exists and, therefore, subjecting employers to unfair public criticism, enforcement measures, and significant litigation costs to defend against meritless claims.
  • SB 1300 (Jackson; D-Santa Barbara) Significant Expansion of Harassment Discrimination and Retaliation Liability —  Significantly increases litigation by allowing a plaintiff to sue for failure to prevent harassment or discrimination when no harassment or discrimination occurs, limits the use of severance agreements, and prohibits the use of a general release or nondisparagement clause in employer/employee contracts.

Tax Increases; Not Subject to Deadline

The following seven tax-related job killer bills were not subject to the July 6 deadline. Although these bills are not moving in the Legislature, they could be taken up at any time before the end of the session.

  • AB 2351 (Eggman; D-Stockton) Targeted Tax on High Earners   Unfairly increases the personal income tax rate from 13.3% – which is already, by far, the highest income tax rate in the country – to 14.3% for one category of taxpayers (including some proprietors), who already pay half of California’s income taxes, forcing them to mitigate these costs through means that include reducing workforce, in order to provide more funding for higher education.
  • ACA 22 (McCarty; D-Sacramento) Middle Class Fiscal Relief Act —  Unnecessarily increases California’s 8.84% corporate tax rate, already one of the highest in the nation, to 18.84%, which will encourage companies to leave the state and discourage companies from expanding or relocating here. 
  • SB 993 (Hertzberg; D- Van Nuys) Tax on Services  Imposes a 3% tax on services purchased by businesses in California, with some exceptions, adding another layer of taxes onto California companies, raising costs, and putting them at a competitive disadvantage.
  • SB 1398 (Skinner; D-Berkeley) Increased Tax Rate — Threatens to significantly increase the corporate tax rate on publicly held corporations and financial institutions up to 15% according to the wages paid to employees in the United States, and threatens to increase that rate by 50% thereafter, if the corporation or institution reduces its workforce in the United States and simultaneously increases its contractors.

2017 JOB KILLER CARRY-OVER BILLS

  • ACA 4 (Aguiar-Curry; D-Winters) Lowers Vote Requirement for New Tax Increases — Unnecessarily reduces the voter threshold from two-thirds to 55% for local governments to enact special taxes, including parcel taxes, for the purpose of improving public infrastructure and affordable housing, which creates an opportunity for discriminatory and higher taxes to be imposed against disfavored industries and commercial property owners.
  • ACA 11 (Caballero; D-Salinas) Targeted Retail Industry Tax Increase — Exposes the retail industry to increased taxes by imposing a quarter-cent sales tax increase to fund affordable housing and homeless shelters, without creating greatly needed market rate housing.
  • SCA 6 (Wiener; D-San Francisco) Lowers Vote Requirement for Tax Increases — Unnecessarily reduces the voter threshold from two-thirds to 55% for local governments to enact special taxes, including parcel taxes, for the purpose of providing transportation services, which creates an opportunity for discriminatory and higher taxes to be imposed against disfavored industries and commercial property owners.

Action Needed

CalChamber is asking businesses to contact their legislators and urge them to oppose these job killers.

Easy-to-edit sample letters are available at www.calchambervotes.com.

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