CSAC Bulletin Article

Government, Finance and Administration Bill Updates

Last week marked a critical deadline for the Legislature when all bills must have passed out of their house of origin. Below is a round-up of how bills being tracked by the Government Finance & Administration team fared.

Broadband

AB 14 (Aguiar-Curry) – AB 14 would make a number of efforts related to closing the digital divide, including the ability to issue a revenue bond of up to $1 billion, and authority for Boards of Supervisors to approve the construction and operation of broadband infrastructure and services. CSAC supports AB 14. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

SB 4 (Gonzalez) – SB 4 would modernize and increase the California Advanced Services Fund, which supports broadband deployment, including enabling local governments to bond finance more than $1 billion to build local infrastructure. CSAC supports SB 4. It is now awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

SB 28 (Caballero) – SB 28 would require the state to identify resources that can aid broadband deployment and would reform the Digital Infrastructure Video Competition Act of 2006 (DIVCA) to require broadband providers to provide more detailed information and serve more residents in their service footprints. CSAC supports SB 28. It will be heard in the Assembly Communications and Conveyance Committee later this month and counties are encouraged to communicate their support with the committee.

Brown Act

AB 339 (Lee) – AB 339 addresses the future of public meetings, and has undergone extensive amendments. In its current form, the bill would only apply to Board of Supervisor and City Council meetings for jurisdictions of at least 250,000 residents. These boards would be required to offer telephone or internet-based participation for the public during their meetings. CSAC opposes AB 339. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

AB 361 (Rivas, R) – AB 361 would codify aspects of last year’s COVID-related Executive Orders by allowing local agencies to bypass Brown Act requirements when there is a state of emergency that makes it unsafe to meet in person. CSAC supports AB 361. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

Supervisor Term Limits

AB 428 (Mayes) – AB 428 would ensure that Supervisors that are subject to term limits be eligible for a minimum of two terms and clarifies that boards of supervisors are responsible for prescribing compensation for all county officers, including the board themselves. CSAC supports AB 428. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

Vital Records

AB 751 (Irwin) – AB 751 would delete the January 2022 sunset date of a provision allowing state and local officials to accept the electronically verified proof of identity of a person requesting a vital record. The bill includes provisions to reflect national standards on secure and robust identity proofing. CSAC supports AB 751. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

Sales and Use Tax

AB 217 (Valladares) – AB 217 would exempt school supplies purchased from July 30, 2022 to August 1, 2022 from sales and use tax. CSAC opposed this bill unless amended to exclude local portions, and it did not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline.

AB 365 (O’Donnell) – AB 365 would exempt from sales and use tax the purchase of a new or used drayage trucks that are zero, or near-zero, emission. CSAC opposed this bill unless amended to exclude local portions, and it did not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline.

AB 607 (Arambula) – AB 607 would exempt products used by blood banks to perform tests on blood donations from sales and use tax. CSAC opposed this bill unless amended to exclude local portions, and it did not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline.

AB 1121 (Rodriguez) – AB 1121 would exempt emergency preparation items sold during a designated three-day period in June from sales and use tax. CSAC opposed this bill unless amended to exclude local portions, and it did not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline.

Property Tax

SB 219 (McGuire) – SB 219 would codify the county tax collector’s ability to cancel late payment penalties or other charges for taxpayers who have experienced financial hardship due to a shelter-in-place order. CSAC supports SB 219. It is now awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

SB 539 (Hertzberg) – SB 539 would  implement certain provisions of Proposition 19, which was approved by voters last year, and provide clarity and guidance for county assessors, the BOE, and property owners on several parts of the new constitutional language. Of particular importance to counties is the clarification that, when a property is transferred between parents (or grandparents) and children (or grandchildren), the transferee must continue using a property as their principal residence to continue receiving the tax benefit for an inherited family home. CSAC supports SB 539, and it is awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

Workers’ Compensation

AB 399 (Salas) AB 399 would have imposed new and significant requirements on the workers’ compensation medical provider network including prohibitions on instruction or requirements as to location for treatment and fines that direct treatment within networks. CSAC opposed AB 399, which not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline and is now a two-year bill.

AB 404 (Salas) – AB 404 initially required the medical-legal fee schedule be updated annually and increased if necessary but never decreased – therefore creating potentially significant costs in the workers’ compensation system. The bill was amended through advocacy efforts to just be reviewed biannually, and updated if necessary. CSAC opposed AB 404, but has dropped opposition and changed to a neutral position based on amendments. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

AB 415 (Rivas, R) – AB 415 would have expanded workers’ compensation cancer presumptions to any employee who is regularly exposed to active fires or health hazards resulting from firefighting operations. Ultimately this could have had significant downstream impacts on a variety of employees or classifications that would have significantly expanded workers’ compensation system and costs, while further eroding the workers’ compensation no-fault system. CSAC opposed AB 415, which not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline and is now a two-year bill.

AB 1465 (Reyes) – AB 1465 would have created a California Medical Provider Network for workers’ compensation entirely separate from the current system, which could have potentially eroded the entirety of the current medical provider network, increased costs, and ultimately reduced standard of care. The bill was amended to only require a study on the current Medical Provider Network system and compare treatment for those who were treated within versus outside of a the current system. CSAC opposed AB 1465, but has dropped opposition and changed to a neutral position based on amendments. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

SB 213 (Cortese) – SB 213 would expanded workers’ compensation presumptions for employees who provide direct patient care in an acute care hospital to include to include infectious diseases, cancer, musculoskeletal injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder, and respiratory diseases. CSAC opposed SB 213, which not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline and is now a two-year bill.

SB 284 (Stern) – SB 284 would expand the definition of “injury” to include post-traumatic stress for public safety dispatchers, public safety telecommunicators, and emergency response communication employees. The provision currently applies to certain state and local firefighters and peace officers. CSAC opposes SB 284. It is awaiting consideration by the assembly.

SB 335 (Cortese) – SB 335 would reduce the period of time employers have to investigate claims from 90 days to 45 days. In addition, it would increase the amount of mandated employer-funded medical care from $10,000 to $17,000 during the period of time a claim is being investigated, even if the claim is ultimately denied. CSAC opposes SB 335. It is awaiting consideration by the assembly.

SB 788 (Bradford) – SB 788 would prohibit consideration of race, religious creed, color, national origin, age, gender, marital status, sex, sexual identity, sexual orientation, or genetic characteristics to determine the approximate percentage of the permanent disability caused by other factors. CSAC has a support if amended position on SB 788, and has asked the author to change the language to state that disability calculations cannot be based on the above factors. The bill is awaiting consideration by the assembly.

Employment

AB 654 (Reyes) – AB 654 expands on last years AB 685, and would require the Department of Public Health to publish a list of every workplace, including address, in the state where a COVID-19 outbreak has occurred, defined as three cases in a two week period.  CSAC opposed AB 654, and it did not pass the Assembly ahead last week’s deadline.

SB 270 (Durazo) – SB 270 would create new types of damages in litigation against California’s public agencies should they improperly file required paperwork with regards to labor unions. CSAC opposes SB 270. It is awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

SB 410 (Leyva) – SB 410 would exempt Cal/OSHA from certain requirements regarding the economic impact of new regulations. Notably, Cal/OSHA would be expemted from requirements that agencies take in to consideration the creation or elimination of jobs within the state and the creation of new or existing businesses in the state, as well as the benefits of the regulation to the health and welfare or California residents, worker safety, and the state’s environment. . CSAC opposes SB 410. It is awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

SB 606 (Gonzalez) – SB 606 would establish a rebuttable presumption that an employer’s actions are retaliatory if an employer takes adverse action against an employee within 90 days of the employee doing certain things (disclosing testing, request testing, reporting violations). CSAC opposes SB 606. It is awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

Leave & Benefits

AB 1041 (Wicks) – AB 1041 would expand paid family leave to include care for any other individual related by blood, or whose close association with the employee is the equivalent of a family relationship who has a serious health condition. CSAC opposes AB 1041. It is now awaiting consideration by the Senate.

AB 1179 (Carrillo) – AB 1179 would require employers to provide all employees on payroll for more than 30 days in a year, up to 60 hours of paid backup childcare benefits. CSAC opposed AB 1179, which not pass the Assembly ahead of last week’s deadline and is now a two-year bill.

Retirement

SB 278 (Leyva) – SB 278 would require public agencies to directly pay retirees or their beneficiaries disallowed retirement benefits using general fund dollars. The bill places 100 percent of the total liability for such overpayments on public agencies—abdicating all responsibility of CalPERS to ensure that retirement benefits are calculated and administered correctly. The bill is a reintroduction of last session’s SB 266, which, in a very unusual turn of events, was approved by the Legislature but not sent to the Governor. CSAC opposes SB 278. It is awaiting consideration by the Assembly.

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