2017 CalChamber in the News


2017 articles and videos from news sources that mention the California Chamber of Commerce (CalChamber.)

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New Business Laws, Including Minimum-Wage Increase, Take Effect Jan. 1
Many of the other notable new business laws are intended to provide protection for job applicants and employees, said Denise Davis, vice president of the California Chamber of Commerce. “Some of the new laws for next year significantly change hiring practices that California businesses commonly use, such as asking job applicants their current salary or screening people based on conviction history before making a job offer,” Davis said. “These new laws mean that employers may need to revise their hiring practices and train hiring managers to ensure they are complying with these changes.” (Ventura County Star, 12/29/17)

New State Workplace Laws Will Help Ex-Offenders, Women, New Parents
Baby bonding must be taken within 12 months of the child’s birth, adoption or foster placement. Although the law does not take effect until Monday, parents covered by it could take at least some of this leave for a child born, adopted or placed in foster care in 2017, said Erika Frank, general counsel for the California Chamber of Commerce. (San Francisco Chronicle, 12/27/17)


How Your Data are Shared and Sold Could be California’s Marquee Ballot Battle in 2018
It doesn’t take a political insider to realize the business world sees things differently and is preparing to fight back should the initiative qualify for the ballot. “Very few people are experts on what the consequences would be,” said Allan Zaremberg, president of the California Chamber of Commerce. He wonders what would happen to state agencies or schools that share data, or whether a nonprofit credit union might be exempt from the new rules but a commercial bank would not be.“The economy in California depends on data sharing,” Zaremberg said. (Los Angeles Times, 11/26/17)

2018’s New Laws: California Businesses Brace for Changes
A slew of new laws that address unpaid parental leave, new hiring restrictions and other workplace issues will have an impact on California businesses in the coming year. The California Chamber of Commerce has released a list of the laws that are scheduled to take effect in 2018 or beyond. Some are far-reaching, while others make small changes to portions of existing laws or may affect employers only in specific industries. (Los Angeles News Group, 11/26/17)


Employers Concerned About Diminished Labor Pool with DACA Phaseout
The California Chamber of Commerce, in a statement released Tuesday, raised serious concerns about the ability of employers to fill the growing number of positions in the state’s burgeoning technology sector. California far outpaces all other states in the number of residents with approved DACA applications — 222,795. “As things stand today, California cannot find enough ‘home grown’ engineers and scientists,” the chamber said. “We need to reform our inadequate H-1B visa program. Without reform, our jobs leave for offshore locations which would not be a good outcome for the state.” (The San Diego Union-Tribune, 9/05/17)


Why Blow Up a Good Deal on Equal Pay?
What’s wrong with gathering more data about employee salaries, especially in the fight for workplace pay equity? Plenty, when the real motivation is to drive more workplace litigation. (Jennifer Barrera and Kara Bush in The Sacramento Bee, 8/30/17)


Extend Cap-and-Trade Program Now to Secure the Future
After almost five years on opposite sides of a cap-and-trade lawsuit, the California Chamber of Commerce and Environmental Defense Fund don’t necessarily agree on much, but we do agree that there is a critical step that the state of California should take to secure the future environmental and economic well-being of the state — and ultimately the world. (Jerry Brown, Allan Zaremberg and Fred Krupp in the Los Angeles Daily News, 7/14/17)

Most of California’s Business-Opposed ‘Job Killer’ Bills are Stalled Out
Despite Democratic control of the Legislature, and usually of the governorship, the chamber, et al, have been remarkably successful, burying about 90 percent of measures on their hit lists. Overwhelmingly, the targeted bills have died without formal votes. Their authors, or legislative leaders, simply decide to allow them to wither on the vine. And that pattern seems to be holding true so far in the 2017 legislative session. (Dan Walters in CALmatters, 7/03/17)


Jerry Brown Went to China to Fight Climate Change. But Can He Do it in His Own Backyard?
Allan Zaremberg, president and chief executive of the California Chamber of Commerce, said his group is among those behind an online campaign that argues cap and trade is the most cost-effective way to meet the state’s pollution targets. If a deal isn’t reached this year, he said, it will be even harder to do so in 2018, an election year. After that, they may have to start from scratch with a new governor. (The Sacramento Bee, 6/30/17)

Can’t Find Work? Maybe You Need New Skills
There is a troubling chasm in the world of work today and it threatens U.S. prosperity and hopes of strengthening the middle class. (Eloy Ortiz Oakley and Allan Zaremberg in the East Bay Times, 6/29/17)

Parental Leave Mandate Hurts Small Business
One of the things keeping state legislators busy in Sacramento right now is a shortsighted attempt to impose on California small businesses a new, one-size-fits-all mandated leave program that threatens their ability to stay in business. (Jennifer Barrera in The San Diego Union-Tribune, 6/2/17)

CalChamber CEO Talks Health Care, Immigration Reform
Allan Zaremberg, president and CEO of the California Chamber of Commerce in Sacramento, made a stop in Fresno Monday to talk business with the Fresno Rotary Club. (Fresno Business Journal, 6/05/17)

CalChamber Chairwoman Says Retaining Foreign Students is Critical for State
The chairwoman of the California Chamber of Commerce said the state’s ability to remain at the forefront of technology depends on improving technology education and on retaining the people educated by California universities. (Sacramento Business Journal, 6/01/17)


California Bills Target Private Business to Help Immigrants
Marti Fisher, a policy advocate at the California Chamber of Commerce, said the measure infringes on business owners’ rights.”It penalizes an employer for choosing to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement authorities, thereby denying the employer the right to determine the best course of action for its business,” she wrote in a statement explaining the chamber’s opposition to the bill. (The Associated Press, 5/27/17)

California Regulators Get an Earful on the Dangers of Indoor Heat
Business leaders and workers cautioned the board against a one-size-fits all approach, but from different perspectives. Workers worried business owners could find loopholes to avoid complying with the regulations. Representatives from several trade organizations asked the board to consider each industry’s needs, rather than one broad standard. “We think [the standard] needs to be refined so we can comply with it, we can understand it, we can actually do it, and it can be enforced. It is not at that point right now,” said Marty Fisher of the California Chamber of Commerce. (KPCC, 5/26/17)

State Officials Contend California Private-Sector Retirement Plan on Firm Legal Ground
California officials vowed Thursday to implement a state-run retirement program that could benefit nearly 7 million private-sector workers despite recent congressional action that seeks to block it. The California chamber later issued a statement saying that the retirement plan now appears to be “inconsistent with the existing statute which provides protection for employers from the threat of litigation.” The business group said it plans to seek an independent legal analysis on the matter. (Los Angeles Times, 5/18/17)

What Will President Trump do to NAFTA?
I wanted to hear more from the other side. So I talked this week to Everett Golden III, president of Otis McAllister Inc., a retail food distributor that employs 65 people at its Oakland headquarters, works with growers and planters in California, operates in 80 countries around the world and has its brands in 3,500 stores across the country. The California Chamber, which referred me to Golden, who is on the U.S. Department of Commerce exports council for Northern California, also promotes the value and importance of NAFTA. (The Sacramento Bee, 5/18/17)

Fearing New Taxes, California Chamber of Commerce Appeals Cap-and-Trade Decision
The California Chamber of Commerce is taking its case against the cap-and-trade program to the state’s highest court. Joining with the conservative Pacific Legal Foundation, the powerful business organization is appealing a recent state appeals court decision upholding cap and trade. (Los Angeles Times, 5/15/17)

California Business Group Revives Efforts Against Cap-And-Trade Program
The California Chamber of Commerce will continue to pursue its lawsuit against the state’s signature climate-change program, cap-and-trade. (Capital Public Radio, 5/15/17)


State Chamber Expands List of Job-Killer Bills
The California Chamber of Commerce on Thursday released an expanded list of 23 “job killer” bills that it is targeting for defeat in the state Legislature. (Los Angeles Business Journal, 4/20/17)

That $52-Billion Road Bill Just Made California’s Next Climate Change Move a Heavy Lift
That’s a tall order, even for Democrats who hold supermajorities in both chambers; the transportation legislation squeaked through without a vote to spare. The looming question in the Capitol, said California Chamber of Commerce President Allan Zaremberg, is, “How many two-thirds votes is the Legislature capable of doing?” (Los Angeles Times, 4/16/17)

Now Is the Time to Fix California’s Pothole Riddled Roads
One way or another, the roads must be fixed. And who better to pay for them than those who use the roads? That’s exactly what Senate Bill 1 does. The Fresno Bee’s editorial Wednesday missed the mark. (Allan Zaremberg in The Fresno Bee, 04/05/17)

Gov. Brown’s Proposal to Fix California’s Roads Isn’t Perfect, but Lawmakers Should Give the Plan a Shot
A road repair kit would make a nice birthday present for Gov. Jerry Brown. And that’s what he’s asking for from the state Legislature. “If Republicans voted for it, they could ask for things,” says Allan Zaremberg, a longtime political player who heads the California Chamber of Commerce, a strong supporter of the bill. “If you don’t vote for it, you don’t get things. “Everybody knows it’s a tough vote. But what alternative is there? The roads are in terrible condition. I almost fell into a pothole today on Highway 101.” (George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times, 04/03/17)

Road Repair Tax Is a Responsible Plan to Get California Moving Again
California’s roads, highways and transit systems are the backbone of our state’s $2.4 trillion economy. Every day, millions of Californians take to the streets to get to work or get their children to school. Billions of dollars’ worth of products move across our state every single day. (Allan Zaremberg in the Los Angeles Daily News, 04/01/17)

Legislation Aimed at Predatory ADA Lawsuits Stalls
Legislation that would shield businesses from predatory lawsuits stalled Tuesday in an Assembly committee concerned with protecting rights of disabled people. AB 913 “targets a very narrow group of individuals (hoping) not to improve accessibility but to leverage quick monetary settlements,” said Jennifer Barrera, senior policy advocate for the California Chamber of Commerce. (The Modesto Bee, 03/29/17)


Business’s Battle with Liberals Returns for a New Session
The Chamber of Commerce signaled that this month when it issued its first list of “job killers” – bills it annually considers the worst. Although there are just four bills on the list, it will doubtless grow to at least two dozen by spring. (Dan Walters in The Sacramento Bee, 01/31/17)

Court Appeal Argues California Emissions Trading Plan Akin to ‘Illegal Tax’
The lawsuit by business group CalChamber argues that the state legislature never authorized the California Air Resources Board (ARB) to collect revenue from the program when it passed AB 32, its landmark climate change law. (Reuters, 01/24/17)

Legal, Political Clashes Will Settle Future of California’s Cap-and-Trade System
A pending lawsuit, brought by the California Chamber of Commerce and supported by other business groups, doesn’t oppose cap-and-trade itself but contends that the current auction system, which has raised several billion dollars, is an illegal tax. (Dan Walters in The Sacramento Bee,01/22/17)

California Strikes a Bold Pose as Vanguard of the Resistance
In the months since the election of Donald J. Trump, California has turned into a laboratory of resistance — championing legal, legislative and political strategies to counter Republican policies while pressing the kind of new Democratic policies that presumably will not be coming out of Washington anytime soon. All of this has unnerved some in the business community. “This is all based on the president-elect’s campaign messaging,” said Allan Zaremberg, the chief executive of the California Chamber of Commerce. “We don’t know how that is going to manifest in action.” (The New York Times, 01/18/17)

Calif. Biz Group Backs Docs In Workers’ Comp, Med Mal Row
The California Chamber of Commerce recently filed a friend-of-the-court brief in a California Supreme Court case that will decide whether doctors appointed by workers’ compensation review boards who make certain medical decisions can be sued for medical malpractice. (Law360, 01/09/17)



Time to Begin Tunnel Project
Re “Jerry Brown plunges ahead on twin tunnels” (Insight, Dec. 22): Gov. Jerry Brown makes a great case for this project. No other project has been studied for more hours, by more water experts, scientists and engineers than the California WaterFix. And for good reason – the status quo is not an option when water supplies for two-thirds of Californians are vulnerable to droughts and natural disasters. Allan Zaremberg in The Sacramento Bee

Minimum Wage, All-Gender Restrooms Among 2017 CA Workplace Laws
Erika Frank, the chamber’s general counsel, points out that a lot of localities have minimum wage rates that are higher than the state. In those areas — San Francisco is one — employers must pay the higher rate. (San Francisco Chronicle, 12/17/16)

Falling Incomes Turn California Into Modern-Day Dust Bowl
Nearly 60 percent of California voters with children living at home agree with the statement, “my children will have a better future if they leave California.” More than 75 percent now think “earning enough income to enjoy a middle-class lifestyle is becoming almost impossible in my part of California.” In Los Angeles County, it’s 87 percent. That’s from a new survey by the California Chamber of Commerce. And if you think those numbers are discouraging, the numbers in a just-released report from the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation are even worse. (Susan Shelley Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, 12/07/16)


Prop 53: What’s the Real Impact on CA’s Infrastructure?
Opponents believe that Prop 53 would threaten future infrastructure projects for California. “It would actually affect local governments — local governments who band together to build large infrastructure projects like water supply projects, toll roads and airports,” said Loren Kaye, president of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education, a think tank affiliated with the California Chamber of Commerce. “Airports are financed through revenue bonds. Toll bridges are financed by revenue bonds; big water projects are financed by revenue bonds.” (KCRA, 11/07/16)

Even if Prop. 64 Passes, You Still Can’t Get High at Work
Employers can still refuse to hire an applicant who tests positive for marijuana in a pre-employment drug test and fire workers who are tested for permissible reasons and fail the test, said Marti Fisher, a policy advocate with the California Chamber of Commerce. (San Francisco Chronicle, 11/07/16)


State I.O.U.s and Voter O.K.s
Opponents, however, including the Democratic Party and a host of labor, business and governmental groups, have argued that Proposition 53 would put crucial local projects at risk by handing veto power to people with no stake in the matters. That presents “almost an impossible task,” said Allan Zaremberg, the president of the California Chamber of Commerce, which opposes the measure. “It would really impair the ability for California to have state-local partnerships on significant major infrastructure projects.” (The New York Times, 10/11/16)

Gov. Jerry Brown, in 14th Year as Governor, Hits a New High in Vetoes
Brown’s vetoes this year included one of the five bills named by the California Chamber of Commerce as “job killers” that survived the legislative session. Since 1999, the chamber has placed that epithet on 553 bills, including 24 this year, that it considers to be the most hostile to business. (Dan Walters in The Sacramento Bee, 10/03/16)


Small Businesses Need a Break
Re “Hernandez isn’t the only one who needs leave” (Editorials, Aug. 4): This editorial insults California small businesses by claiming that adding yet another protected leave program to the state’s lengthy list would simply create an “inconvenience” for them. Small businesses are reeling from costs created by other recent mandates, including the minimum-wage hike and paid sick leave. If Senate Bill 1166 were to become law, an employer could face the need to provide up to seven months of leave to some employees when the proposal is coupled with existing mandates. (Allan Zaremberg in The Sacramento Bee, 08/08/16)


Business-Opposed ‘Job Killer’ Bills Will Face Final Test Next Month
Over the nearly two decades since, through four governorships, only a handful of the targeted bills have made it into law while still carrying the labels. (Dan Walters in The Sacramento Bee, 07/29/16)

Proposition 53: A Battle Over Debt
Powerful interests have joined to block Proposition 53, including the state Chamber of Commerce, which represents business interests, and the State Building and Construction Trades Council, or BCTC, which is affiliated with unions whose workers handle major construction projects, such as the $68 billion bullet train and the $15 billion twin-tunnels project in the delta. Both groups routinely play a major role in California elections. “What’s the problem with the existing law?” said Chamber President Allan Zaremberg. “I don’t see anyone complaining that revenue bonds are an issue in their community or the state.” (Capitol Weekly, 07/19/16)

States Aim to Fill Pension Gaps with “Auto IRAs”
With a push from AARP, a small but growing number of states are legislating “automatic IRAs” for the employees of their smaller businesses that don’t offer a pension or 401(k). The American Council of Life Insurers has been the biggest and most vocal opponent. But in California, the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association is part of a group of 36 trade and business organizations led by the California Chamber of Commerce that’s opposing a proposed auto-IRA. They want it amended to address a variety of concerns, including potential employer liability, said Marti Fisher, the Chamber’s policy advocate. (MoneyWatch, 07/05/16)


Bill to End Gender Disparity in Retail Pricing is Withdrawn After Pushback from Industry Lobbyists
Other opponents said the bill created gray areas that could lead to excessive and costly accusations over pricing. Jennifer Barrera, a lobbyist with the California Chamber of Commerce, said she was concerned that small businesses could be sued even when they had valid reasons for their pricing decisions. “There is still ambiguity in the statute, and if there is room for ambiguity then it’s going incentivize litigation,” she said. (Los Angeles Times, 06/29/16)

‘Pink Tax’ Bill Dies: You’ll Still Pay More for Products Marketed to Women
But the business-friendly California Chamber of Commerce branded the bill a “job killer” and pushed for its defeat. The California Retailers Association said it was unworkable and would result in confusion, inaccurate pricing and increased costs. “The version that was up for a vote would have been harmful,” said Jennifer Barrera, a policy advocate with the California Chamber of Commerce. “It could have led to frivolous lawsuits over minor pricing differences that have nothing to do with gender.” (The Orange County Register, 06/29/16)

California Bill to Ban Gender-Based Pricing Dies
SB899 would have allowed consumers to file discrimination lawsuits against companies that violate the ban on gender-based pricing. Business groups warn that the measure would subject companies to frivolous litigation and raise prices for consumers. (The Associated Press, 06/28/16)

California Keeps Gender-Based Pricing for Retail Goods
The measure stalled in the Assembly Judiciary Committee last week amid concerns that it would subject businesses to costly lawsuits. The California Chamber of Commerce had placed SB 899 on its list of “job killers.” (The Sacramento Bee, 06/28/16)

‘Brexit’ Could Halt the Growth of California Trade with Britain
California and its $5 billion of annual exports to Britain could be standing in harm’s way if there’s economic upheaval caused by Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. “No one in California can be immune from dramatic changes in the international economic structure,” Allan Zaremberg, president of the California Chamber of Commerce, said in a statement. “California has a lot at stake.” (Los Angeles Times, 06/25/16)

British EU Exit Could Sting California, but the Price of Scotch Might Fall
“California has a lot at stake,” Allan Zaremberg, president of the California Chamber of Commerce, said in a prepared statement. “We are the sixth largest economy in the world and a major trading and investment state, and no one in California can be immune from dramatic changes in the international economic structure.” (The Sacramento Bee, 06/24/16)

Should California Limit the Number of Small, New Water Systems?
Opponents include the California Chamber of Commerce, California Building Industry Association and Association of California Water Agencies. They note that it’s often developers who need to create new water systems, particularly if they can’t work out agreements with existing ones. “In its current form, the bill would set up an open-ended bureaucratic process that could make it more expensive to build new homes and developments,” said Valerie Nera, a lobbyist with the California Chamber of Commerce. (San Jose Mercury News, 06/20/16)

California’s Prop 65 Controversy
‘Prop 65 has become a litigation playground for plaintiff’s attorneys,’ states Anthony Samson from the California Chamber of Commerce. In fact, Kevin Ott from the Flexible Vinyl Alliance in Washington, DC says the average settlement from retailers, manufacturers, and distributors is $65,000 per notice. This means that businesses sued under Prop 65 could end up having to pay $65,000 in fines three separate times per lawsuit. (Chemistry World, 6/16/16)

Job Creators
Job creation should be a prime emphasis of the legislature. The California Chamber of Commerce has gained notoriety over the years for its list of job killer bills—those bills that the Chamber feels will prevent job creation or reduce the number of jobs in the state. Since the job killer list has existed, legislators and governors of both parties have paid close attention to the Chamber’s concerns, often siding with the Chamber on these bills. (Joel Fox in Fox and Hounds Daily 06/15/16)

Kirk West, Longtime Business Advocate in the Capitol, Dies at 79
Kirk West, a towering and affable fixture of Capitol politics for more than a half-century, died Thursday after a battle with cancer. He was 79. West’s career in politics included stints in several private and public positions, including chief executive of both the California Taxpayers Association and the California Chamber of Commerce. (The Sacramento Bee, 06/03/16)


It’s Time for California to Curb Enthusiasm for ADA Lawsuit Abuse
At the state level, Senate Bill 1142 has been introduced by Sen. John Moorlach, R-Costa Mesa, and Sen. Richard Roth, D-Riverside, has proposed SB 269. Both bills have been named among the California Chamber of Commerce’s 12 “job creator” bills. (Los Angeles Daily News, 04/26/16)

California Bill to Unionize ‘Gig’ Workers Likely Dead for 2016
Business groups like the California Chamber of Commerce and the Internet Association, a technology industry lobbying group, opposed the bill. Labor groups including the Teamsters and the United Food and Commercial Workers were in support. (The Sacramento Bee CapitolAlert, 04/21/16)

New Bill Would Give Californians Three Paid Days of Parental Leave
While opponents aren’t arguing with the intent of the bill, the California Chamber of Commerce said companies would struggle with paid leave, particularly if they don’t currently have a paid leave policy. Businesses are also struggling to comply with three days of paid sick leave and other forms of protective leave. “It’s a matter of balance when you start talking about protective leave of absence,” said Jennifer Barrera, policy advocate for CalChamber. (Sacramento Business Journal, 04/21/16)

Uber And Lyft Drivers Could Organize Under Assembly Bill
Business groups oppose the bill. Tech industry groups say the bill is too broad; it does not limit the number of collective bargaining units that could negotiate with each company. Jennifer Barrera of the California Chamber of Commerce also said it wouldn’t just affect the tech industry. “This could impact obviously a host of industries, including health care, construction, agriculture, across the board,” said Barrera. (Capital Public Radio, 04/21/16)


California Lawmakers OK Highest Statewide Minimum Wage
California lawmakers on Thursday approved the nation’s highest statewide minimum wage of $15 an hour to take effect by 2022 after it was hailed by Democrats as an example to the nation as it struggles with a growing gap between rich and poor. However, Allan Zaremberg, president of the California Chamber of Commerce, said the increase was being made too fast. “It is unfortunate the Legislature didn’t take advantage of the opportunity to address the issue in a more balanced manner,” he said. (The Associated Press, 03/31/16)

Here’s Where CalChamber Stands on Two High-Profile Ballot Issues
Worried about employer costs, the California Chamber of Commerce has taken a stand on two high-profile issues headed to the ballot. (Sacramento Business Journal 03/07/16)

California Bond Vote Measure Takes a Beating
Democratic legislators and officials, business and labor representatives, and water suppliers took turns Wednesday flailing a November ballot measure that would require voter approval of major state revenue bond issues. The California Chamber of Commerce and the State Building and Construction Trades Council, which are often at odds, also voiced their opposition, and were joined by the Association of California Water Agencies. (The Sacramento Bee 03/02/16)


A Tax Hike That No One Could Quibble About
The state Chamber of Commerce, California’s most powerful business lobby, supports the tax on health plans. “It’s the right thing to do and makes sense,” says chamber President Allan Zaremberg. “However, on a pure political scale, there are people who are appropriately prudent — and should be.” (George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times 02/22/16)

Addressing an Uneven Economy
Allan Zaremberg, president and CEO of the California Chamber of Commerce, recently hit it on the head with his assessment of Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed budget and the state’s priorities in recovering from the economic downturn. (Fresno Business Journal, 02/15/16)


Communities Need Good Schools
Ali Youssefi pointed out a number of ways developers can help make Sacramento’s urban core more vibrant and draw in new residents. I would add one more important piece, however. Vibrant communities need families, not just single 20-somethings and active retirees looking to live closer to commercial and cultural amenities. (Allan Zaremberg in The Sacramento Bee, 01/30/16)

Change To Prop. 13 Could Be Headed For November Ballot
But Allan Zaremberg with the California Chamber of Commerce says the measure would reach beyond the rich. “In California, if you have a small restaurant, you’re probably renting from somebody who has a property of $3 million or more,“ Zaremberg says. “So you’re gonna pay more in rent. And you just can’t afford that.” (Capital Public Radio 01/19/16)

California Must Address Our Uneven Recovery
Gov. Jerry Brown has proposed a state budget brimming with new revenues, but carefully socking part of the surplus away for a future economic downturn. He understands the impermanence of recovery. In fact, California has been the source of recent national fluctuations, from the dot-com bubble 15 years ago to the more recent housing bubble. (Allan Zaremberg in The Sacramento Bee 01/18/16)

Retirement Liabilities Remain Despite State Budget Surplus
In negotiations with public-employee unions, he’s asking state workers to pay into a fund through a deduction on their paychecks. The state would pay an equal amount. “Over the next three decades we’d have enough money to basically eliminate that unfunded liability going forward,” Finance Director Michael Cohen told the California Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday. (The Associated Press 01/18/16)

California Cranks Out New Businesses and Jobs Despite Criticism
Still, critics of the state’s business climate say the rapid pace of new business creation masks the challenges for long-tenured companies operating in an expensive state. “Certainly you have the talent here and you have the investor capital, so start-ups are going to blossom here more than the rest of the country,” said Allan Zaremberg, president and chief executive of the California Chamber of Commerce. “Once you get beyond that, if you have an IPO, you have to be able to perform. Mature industries are always looking at their costs: Can my employees afford to live here? Can I afford the rent?” (Los Angeles Times 01/02/16)