Monday, August 29, 2011

What the...

Sitting in my office reading through summaries of bills making their way through the California legislature, I'm suddenly feeling like I'm about to channel my grandmother. Many a time in my youth, when we kids would pull a stunt that was stupid, or dangerous or both, Nana would lean out over the porch and holler "What in the Hell do you think you're doing out there?" That'll get your attention by golly!

Today, I want to holler that towards Sacramento. If only they were listening!

There remain (too) many job killer bills that continue working their way through committees in Sacramento that are stupid, or dangerous, or both. Instead of spending their time concentrating on creating private-sector jobs to help fix this lousy economy, they are writing nonsense bills that do nothing to spur job growth.

Take for instance AB 889 (Ammiano; D-San Francisco). If passed, this bill will require anyone hiring a domestic worker—including babysitters, yard maintenance crews and nannies—to provide a duty-free, 30-minute meal period at or before five hours of work and a 10-minute uninterrupted rest period at or before four hours of work.

Forgetting for a minute that the bill expands mandates to private homeowners that sophisticated businesses with professional human resources staff already struggle with, this bill does NOTHING to promote hiring in California. In fact, I can't imagine how you'd even enforce this. I don't know about you, but I'm not even home when my yard care crew shows up, so I've got absolutely no idea when they take a lunch break, let alone a rest period. If I was hiring a nanny, am I supposed to hire another nanny to watch the kid while the first nanny takes a meal period? Honestly?

While this bill is stalled for the remainder of this year, you can bet it will be back next year, and we'll be on the watch for it. This one falls squarely into the category of stupid.

Here are a few that cross over into dangerous from a job-creation point of view. We're continuing to follow, and strongly oppose, AB 22 (Mendoza; D-Artesia) that will limit an employers ability to use a consumer credit report when evaluating job applicants. We also strongly oppose AB 375 (Skinner; D-Berkely) that will increase Worker's Compensation costs for private and public hospitals by expanding injury presumptions.

AB 350 (Solario; D-Anaheim) requires subsequent contractors performing property services (cleaning, maintenance, cafeteria, etc) to hire the employees of the previous contractor when taking over a new property. This bill is headed to the Senate Floor, and we continue to oppose it. You should, too. This bill puts State government squarely into the realm of mandating who private business must hire.

The State legislature has clearly taken their eye off the ball when it comes to turning this economy around. While the private sector struggles to find ways to survive this economy, they continue to build roadblocks in the form of nonsensical regulations. It's time to STOP!

Here's an idea for any legislator considering writing a new bill, or supporting most of what's currently on the table. If it doesn't make it easier to create jobs in the private sector, JUST SAY NO. Stop wasting your time and our money. Get back to work on what matters, and what matters to everyone right now are jobs, plain and simple.

So, because it appears you folks in Sacramento haven't been listening lately, let us put it into grandmother terms for ya.

All together now...."What in the Hell do you think you're doing out there?"

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