CAPHCC Legislative Update by Richard Markuson, Lobbyist

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The Senate Education Committee continued to advance legislation with State Building and Construction Trades Council “Union Favored” language. Wednesday the committee approved AB 1185 (Oppose) by Ridley-Thomas that gives LAUSD “best value” contracting authority (as opposed to lowest responsible bidder). The merit-shops opposed provisions in the bill that exempt union contractors from having a “safe workplace” and allows them to demonstrate their commitment to a “skilled workforce” by adopting a PLA. Ridley-Thomas’s real world experience was as a Legislative staff before election to the Legislature. His father served in the Legislature before being elected to the LA County Board of Supervisors. You can see his campaign donors here.

The committee also passed (again on a party-line vote) AB 1431 (Oppose) by Jimmy Gomez that would permit school districts to use Job Order Contracting (JOC) but only if they adopt a PLA for all district work over $25,000 for five years! I suggested the Legislature deserved an “F” (education committee) for Fair and Open Competition if they passed the bill with the PLA language – needless to say, they were not persuaded. Gomez was the Political Director for UNAC (one of the nurses union). You can see where Gomez, who can serve until 2024, received his campaign contributions here.

The Senate Labor Committee approved AB 219 (Oppose) by Tom Daly on a party-line vote. The bill expands the definition of public works to include the hauling and delivery of ready-mixed concrete on public works contracts. The bill contravenes longstanding and well-established legal precedent that material suppliers are not subject to prevailing wage law. DIR has specifically addressed the question of whether the prevailing wage applies in such cases. Worse, the bill also potentially sets off a “chain reaction” and the delivery of lumber, steel, paint, welding materials, fuel and other supplies will soon be subject to prevailing wage? Robbie Hunter – the head of the State Building and Construction Trades Council has two stated goals – expanding prevailing wage and capturing more projects with PLAs. The majority party in the State Legislature shows no inclination of denying either objective. You can see Daly’s campaign finance here.

The Senate Appropriations committee passed AB 970 (Oppose) by Adrin Nazarian that will subject employers to layers of penalties and enforcement efforts, increased annual assessments, and a limited opportunity to appeal by authorizing the Labor Commissioner to issue a citation to enforce local minimum wage and overtime laws. You can see Nazarian’s campaign finance here.

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