State of California
Department of Industrial Relations

P. O. Box 420603
San Francisco, CA 94142
Sacramento - Office of the Director


Click here for 2001 Legislative Summary

Chuck Cake
Acting Director


Wages Hours and Labor Standards
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 2195  Corbett  02-275  Workplace Protections
AB 2412  Diaz  02-933  Enforcement to employee's access to payroll records
AB 2509  Goldberg  02-298  Labor Standards: local jurisdictions
AB 2895  Shelley  02-934  Private Employment: working conditions
AB 2957  Koretz 02-780  Mass Layoff, relocations and terminations
AB 2985  L & E  02-662  Private Employment: wages and hours
SB 1471  Romero  02-1107  Sick Leave
SB 1818  Romero  02-1071  Employment laws: enforcement actions
AB 1677  Koretz  Vetoed  Garment Manufacturing
AB 2189  Koretz  Vetoed  Displaced Contract Transit Employees
AB 2752  Alquist  Vetoed  Discrimination against injured workers
AB 2987  L & E  Vetoed  Payment of Wages: penalties
AB 2989  L & E  Vetoed  Wages: severance pay
AB 2990  L & E  Vetoed  Employment: retaliation
SB 360  Machado  Vetoed  State employees: wages
SB 783  Escutia  Vetoed  Whistleblowers
SB 1466  Alarcon  Vetoed  Contracts for labor or services
Workers' Compensation
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 486  Calderon  02-886  Workers' Compensation: administration and benefits
AB 749  Calderon  02-6  Workers' Compensation: administration and benefits
AB 1847  Correa  02-870  Public safety members: biochemical substances
AB 1985  Calderon  02-873  Insurance: WC-state rate supervision
AB 2125  McLeod 02-876  Workers' Compensation: Lyme disease
AB 2816  Shelley  02-1098  Workers' Compensation: contractors and temp labor
SB 1407  Burton  02-893  Workers' Compensation: taxicab drivers study
SB 1907  Murray  02-309  Healing Arts: referrals
SB 2011  Burton  02-905  Judicial branch employees
AB 1820  Strom-Martin  Vetoed  Meningitis and Tuberculosis: firefighters
SB 1395  Machado  Vetoed  Workers' Compensation: peace officers
SB 1609  Soto  Vetoed  Licensed health care professionals: infectious disease
SB 1713  Peace  Vetoed  Workers' Compensation: leave of absence for disability
Agricultural Employees
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 2596  Wesson 02-1146  Agricultural mediation procedures
SB 1156  Burton  02-1145  Agricultural mediation procedures
AB 325  Reyes Vetoed  Protection of farm workers
SB 1736  Burton  Vetoed  Binding arbitration for farm workers
Public Works/Prevaling Wage
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 1000  Simitian  02-637  Public works: design build projects
AB 1448  Maddox  02-28  Prevailing wage laws: violations
AB 1506  Wesson  02-868  Public works
SB 278  Machado  02-892  Public works project: Water Security, Clean Drinking Water, Coastal and Beach Protection Act of 2002
SB 972  Costa  02-1048  Public works: prevailing wage
SB 1759  Johannessen  02-976  Public works: local agencies
Occupational Safety and Health
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 2118  Dickerson  02-368  Cal/OSHA: volunteer firefighters
AB 2837  Koretz  02-885  Safety in Employment
SB 1886  Torlakson  02-1149  Elevators and other conveyances
AB 2845  Goldberg  Vetoed  Safety in Employment
AB 2988  L & E  Vetoed  Cal/OSHA Targeted Inspection and Consultation
Apprenticeship Standards
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 1087  Calderon  02-48  Electrician certification
AB 1131  Frommer  02-11  Apprenticeship standards
AB 2743  Lowenthal  02-580  Barbering and cosmetology apprenticeship
AB 2827  Diaz  Vetoed  Apprenticeship programs: graduation rate study
Other Legislation
Bill Number Author Chapter Number Subject
AB 1900  Nakano  02-366  Labor History Week
AB 2007  Calderon  02-431  California Insurance Guarantee Association
AB 2078  Kelley  02-750  Joint Powers Authority: self insurance
AB 2913  Firebaugh  02-1070  Bracero workers: statutes of limitations
SB 1236  Alarcon  02-859  Labor & Workforce Development Agency
AB 1309  Goldberg  Vetoed  Employment: reports on gender and ethnicity
SB 1652  Sher  Vetoed  Athlete Agents


Wages, Hours and Labor Standards

AB 2195  Corbett Workplace Protections
Chapter 275, Statutes of 2002

This bill prohibits an employer from discharging or acting in any discriminatory manner against an employee for specified activities relating to attending court, seeking help, or other assistance on account of being a victim of sexual assault. This bill authorizes an employee who is a victim of sexual assault to use paid or unpaid leave in order to attend to such activities. An employee may file a complaint within one year of the occurrence of an employer's violation of the provisions of the bill with the Labor Commissioner.

AB 2412  Diaz Enforcement to employee's access to payroll records
Chapter 933, Statutes of 2002

This bill specifies that within 21 days of receiving a written or oral request for a current or former employee, an employer must provide copies (at cost) or permit the employee to inspect his or her payroll records. This bill provides for a $750 penalty for an employer that fails to comply. It allows an employee to bring civil action for injunctive relief to obtain access to payroll records.

AB 2509  Goldberg Labor Standards: local jurisdictions
Chapter 298, Statutes of 2002

This bill reinforces existing law providing that local jurisdictions are allowed to enforce local labor standards in their jurisdictions provided those standards do no explicitly contradict or are not pre-empted by state law. The bill bars state agencies that provide funding to projects in local jurisdictions from requiring those entities not to enforce local labor standards as a condition of receiving state funds. The bill's intent is to reinforce the existing right of local jurisdictions to enforce labor standards that are more stringent than required by state law.

AB 2895  Shelley Private employment: working conditions
Chapter 934, Statutes of 2002

This bill prohibits discriminatory and coercive acts by employers to prevent employees from disclosing information about their working conditions.

AB 2957  Koretz  Mass layoff relocations and terminations
Chapter 780, Statutes of 2002

This bill requires employers with 75 or more employees who layoff, relocate, or terminate 50 or more workers at once to first give 60 days notice to affected employees, similar to the federal WARN Act. This bill further provides for civil penalties against an employer who fails to give the required notice. Employees who bring a civil action to enforce the provisions of this bill are, at the discretion of the court, entitled to recover attorney's fees.

AB 2985  Labor & Employment Committee Private employment: wages and Hours
Chapter 662, Statutes of 2002

This bill requires the Labor and Workforce Development Agency to conduct an independent study that includes information identifying federal and state resources available to determine the most effective means of enforcing wage and hour laws.

SB 1471  Romero  Sick Leave
Chapter 1107, Statutes of  2002

This bill specifies that an absence control policy that counts sick leave taken to care for an ill child, parent, spouse, or domestic partner is a violation of the law.

SB 1818  Romero  Employment laws: enforcement actions
Chapter 1071

This bill maintains that all protections, rights and remedies available under state law are available to all individuals who have applied for employment, or who are or who have been employed in this state, regardless of immigration status; with the exception of reinstatement remedies prohibited by federal law.

Wages, Hours and Labor Standards - Vetoed

AB 1677  Koretz  Garment Manufacturing

This bill would prohibit employers from charging their employees a fee for cashing an employee's payroll check, and makes changes to wage, hour and meal period requirements under specified circumstances.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�Employees are currently protected from the practice of employers receiving money from the payroll checks of their employees. Additionally, certain provisions of this bill concerning meal and rest periods for public transit workers may be too costly and overly burdensome to public transit agencies. The term "hours worked" has already been adequately defined in California labor law by the IWC.

Finally, the Labor Commissioner has already complied with the mandate of this bill to appoint members to a Garment Manufacturing Advisory Committee by January 2003."

AB 2189  Koretz  Displaced Contract Transit Employees

This bill provided a temporary employment period for employees that work for public transit service contractors or subcontractors who might otherwise become unemployed with little or no prior notice because their employer's contract was not renewed. The purpose of this measure is to provide a transitional period of continued employment for transit workers who might otherwise be laid off when their employer loses a contract to provide services for a local government agency, and begin work for the new contractor during a 60-day interim period of employment.

The Governor stated in his veto message:

"�Although I signed a nearly identical bill present to me last year that provided transitional employment for janitorial workers, I am unable to do so on this occasion. Unlike the problems that plague workers in the janitorial industry, workers that labor under public contracts are not subject to the exploitation that motivated me to sign the legislation for janitorial workers. In addition, local governments have the authority and option of setting higher wage and benefit requirements for contract bids for public transportation when necessary to meet the needs and the best interests of their communities."

AB 2752  Alquist  Discrimination against injured workers

This bill would have altered the existing protections of workers who experience employment discrimination because they have exercised their rights to report hazardous working conditions or have refused to perform unsafe work. It would have also created a separate unit within the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement to handle discrimination complaints related to workplace safety.

The Governor stated in his veto message:

"�I greatly appreciate the importance of protecting workers from retaliation when they refuse to perform unsafe work or report dangerous working conditions to their employers or to government agencies and others who share the charge of keeping our workplaces safe and injury-free. There are currently in law significant protections for these workers. Moreover, the measure could reduce the Department of Industrial Relation's ability to properly enforce these protections."

AB 2987  Labor & Employment Committee  Payment of wages: penalties

This bill would have increased the amounts of misdemeanor fines and various civil penalties associated with the violation of specified labor laws.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�in these sensitive economic times, we must take care that the steps we take to correct the problem of labor law violations, committed by a small minority of unscrupulous employers, do not adversely affect the majority of honest employers and their employees. I strongly believe that increase penalties must be accompanied by expanded efforts to reach and educate all employers. I will be happy to consider future legislation that strives to achieve this balance."

AB 2989  Labor & Employment Committee  Wages: Severance Pay

This bill would have entitled employees to severance pay, under specified conditions, if their employer lays off employees, or relocates or terminates operations at an industrial or commercial facility.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"..While I fully understand the plight of workers faced with the loss of employment, I believe that the enactment of this bill at this juncture would prove to be counterproductive to achieving the broader goal of a full recovery of California's economic health. Businesses usually resort to layoffs when they have fallen on hard economic times. Forcing already troubled businesses to fund severance payouts may accelerate overall job loss by increasing layoffs and business closures."

AB 2990  Labor & Employment Committee  Employment: retaliation

This bill would have created a rebuttable presumption that if a person discharges, demotes, suspends or reduces the hours of work or pay of an employee within 90 days after the employee exercised rights enumerated under the Labor Code, the person's action was retaliatory.

The Governor states in his veto message:

"This bill would only aggravate a practice by some employees, who, upon learning they are being investigated for misconduct, report groundless allegations of misconduct by their supervisors or co-workers. The purpose of fabricating a prophylactic realiation claim is to forestall the employer from bringing an adverse action. This practice by disgruntled employees will have a chilling effect on a supervisors' willingness to legitimately discipline problem employees.

AB 2990 creates a significant, irreconcilable conflict with the burden of proff and presumption of innocence in criminal proceedings. This bill provides that those violations of Labor Code 98.6 (b) may be punished as a misdemeanor. The presumption retaliation created by this bill conflicts with the constitutional presumption of innocence to which every criminal defendant is entitled."

SB 360  Machado  State employees: wages

This bill would have required state agencies to pay their employees earned wages on designated regular paydays. It was intended to strengthen AB 2410 (Statutes of 2000, Chapter 885) by codifying as Labor Code 220 (c) the requirement for a state employer to pay state workers their regular wages and overtime pay in a timely manner. In addition, the bill required that overtime pay must be paid no later than the next regular payroll period. A state employer that violates the bill's provisions is subject to civil and misdemeanor penalties that already apply to private employers.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�This Administration strongly believes that State employees should be paid on a timely basis, and we have worked diligently with the State Controller to accomplish that.

This bill is unnecessary. Federal law (Fair Labor Standards Act) already provides for the payment of wages, including overtime, prior to the following pay period. The State is also subject to Labor Code Section 207, which requires regular pay days."

SB 783  Escutia  Whistleblowers

This bill would have amended the whistleblower protection statute to require reporting of improper activity to the Attorney General (AG) when companies and their management have actual knowledge of wrongdoing. This bill imposed severe civil penalties on corporations, a Limited Liability Company (LLC) , or their officers or directors, members, or managers for failing to disclose such information to the AG or appropriate governmental agency and, in the case of corporations or LLCs, who failed to act or warn, when they had actual knowledge of activities that would harm shareholders and investors.

The Governor stated in his veto message:

"�While the vast majority of the bill's provisions have merit, our main focus should be on punishing wrongdoers and encouraging reporting of wrongdoing. Along those lines, I would sign legislation next year that includes the important provisions of this bill that establish a whistleblower hotline at the Attorney General's Office, further protect whistleblowers against retaliation, and require employers to post notices of whistleblower rights. I would also support the provisions in Section 5(b) of this bill that pins liability on the corporation for various acts and non-acts. However, I am concerned about the provisions in Section 5(a) that would place liability on individuals who did not actually commit the wrongful act themselves.

I am directing my Task Force on Corporate Governance, which I established last month and is chaired by the Secretaries of Business, Transportation, and Housing and State and Consumer Services Agencies, to work with the author on drafting this legislation�"

SB 1466  Alarcon  Contracts for labor or services

This bill would make it a violation of state law for any person or entity to enter into a contract for labor or services in the construction, farm labor, garment, janitorial or security industries if the person or entity knows or should know that the contract does not provide sufficient funds to comply with various laws. This bill would allow employees to recover actual damages through civil action. It also creates a rebuttable presumption that a person or entity that enters into a voluntary written agreement with specified criteria does not violate the proposed law. This bill would also exempt any person or entity that executes a collective bargaining agreement covering the workers employed under the contract.

In his veto message, the Governor writes:

"�Over the last 4 years I have signed several bills in an effort to protect California's most vulnerable workers including: 1) AB 633 (Steinberg 1999) Garment Industry enforcement; 2) AB 423 (Hertzberg 2001) Farmworker Contractor Labor Standards; 3) AB 471 (Hertzberg 2001) Regulations and Arbitration for Backstretch Workers; and 4) SB 20 (Alarcon 2001) Displaced Janitor Protections. I also recently signed SB 1241 (Figueroa 2002) which will expedite the registration process for private security guards.

All of these measures provide specific benefits and protections and

we need to give those laws time to work�"



AB 486  Calderon  Workers' Compensation: administration and benefits
Chapter 886,Statutes of 2002  

Assembly Bill (AB) 486 makes technical, clarifying and substantive changes to AB 749 (Calderon), Chapter 6, Statutes of 2002, the comprehensive workers' compensation bill enacted in February and effective in 2003.

AB 749  Calderon  Workers' Compensation: administration and benefits
Chapter 6,Statutes of 2002  

This bill is a comprehensive workers' compensation bill that increases workers' compensation benefits and implements cost-saving reforms in the administration of the workers' compensation system.

AB 1847  Correa  Public safety members: biochemical substances
Chapter 870,Statutes of 2002  

This bill establishes a compensable injury presumption under the Workers' Compensation Law and the disability retirement provisions of state and local retirement systems for exposure to a biochemical substance.

AB 1985  Calderon  Insurance: WC: state rate supervision
Chapter 873, Statutes of 2002

This bill authorizes the Insurance Commissioner (IC) to disapprove workers' compensation rate filing if (1) premiums generated from the rates are not adequate to cover an insurer's losses and expenses, or (2) rates as modified would be inadequate to cover an insurer's losses and expenses or would impair or threaten the solvency of an insurer. This bill adds workers' compensation insurance to the definition of property and casualty insurer, subjecting workers' compensation insurers to file an annual risk-based capital report. Its purpose is to give the Department of Insurance more authority to regulate workers' compensation rates and stabilize the market.

AB 2125  McLeod  Workers' Compensation: Lyme Disease
Chapter 876, Statutes of 2002

The bill creates a rebuttable presumption of compensability under workers' compensation law for specified peace officers and members of the California Conservation Corps who contract Lyme Disease. This bill's intent is to protect certain specified members who work in high-risk areas for contracting Lyme Disease.

AB 2816  Shelley  Workers' Compensation: contractors and temporary labor
Chapter 1098 Statutes of 2002

This bill requires that, when a temporary agency enters into a contract with a licensed contractor to provide the licensed contractor with the services of an individual, the temporary agency must pay the workers' compensation premiums for that individual based on the experience modification of the licensed contractor. This bill also clarifies that the temporary agency shall be solely responsible for workers' compensation for that individual.

SB 1407  Burton  Workers' Compensation: Taxicab drivers study
Chapter 893, Statutes of 2002

This bill authorizes the Insurance Commissioner (IC) to receive a report prepared by a licensed rating organization of the potential underreporting of workers' compensation exposure in the taxicab industry by April 1, 2003. It directs the IC to submit a report to the Governor and Legislature by May 1, 2003 that describes the reliability of the methodology utilized and the findings reported. The intent of this measure is to collect additional information regarding potential underreporting of workers' compensation exposure in the taxicab industry.

SB 1907  Murray  Healing Arts: referrals
Chapter 309, Statutes of 2002

This bill would exempt personal services arrangements between a physician or an immediate family member of the physician and a recipient of referrals by the physician or an immediate family member of the physician from the prohibitions in the Business and Professions Code and the Labor Code against a physician making a referral to a person with whom the physician has a financial interest if the personal services arrangement meets specified requirements. This bill would conform California laws restricting self-interested physician referrals to federal healthcare law regulating physician referrals under Medicare and other federally funded healthcare programs.

SB 2011  Burton  Judicial Branch Employees
Chapter 905 Statutes of 2002

This bill establishes provisions, guidelines and protections for trial court employees, including employee rights of hire, transfer, portability of seniority, membership in recognized employee organizations, agency shop arrangements, layoff procedure and representation elections as well as dispute resolution rights. This bill also allows for the superior court system to be included in the state's exemption from having to secure workers' compensation payments.

Workers' Compensation - Vetoed

AB 1820  Strom-Martin  Meningitis and Tuberculosis: firefighters

This bill would have extended the tuberculosis and meningitis rebuttable presumptions to volunteer and partially paid firefighters. Workers' compensation presumptions generally incorporate volunteer and partly paid firefighters, except in cases of meningitis and tuberculosis. This bill would have eliminated that disparity. In addition, this measure would have extended this presumption to a person following termination of service for a period of 90-days starting with the last date of work in the specified capacity.

The Governor stated in his veto message:

"..I greatly appreciate the enormous contribution made by volunteer and partly paid firefighters. In the best of all worlds, I would sign this measure, but given the difficult economic times we are experiencing, I unfortunately cannot do so.

I recently signed legislation greatly enhancing workers' compensation an unemployment insurance benefits for all injured and disabled workers. In a better economy, I would be open to an appropriately drafted bill."

SB 1395  Machado  Workers' Compensation: peace officers

This bill created a skin cancer rebuttable presumption for peace officers employed by the Department of Fish and Game and the Department of Parks and Recreation. The purpose of this measure is to create a rebuttable presumption of skin cancer for specified peace officers exposed to hazardous environments and who experience prolonged exposure to ultraviolet rays, fires, and hazardous chemicals. It removes the burden of proof from specified employees who contract skin cancer as a result of working in their respective environment.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�Under current law, when employees contract cancer or any other disease because of job-related duties, they are eligible to receive workers' compensation benefits and an industrial disability retirement.

However, this bill would award benefits through the workers' compensation and the industrial disability retirement systems for illnesses that may not have been caused by the employee's job. Decisions regarding industrial causation and eligibility for workers' compensation benefits should be based on a thorough review of the evidence, including the medical evidence pertaining to the claim."

SB 1609  Soto  Licensed health care professionals: infectious disease

This bill creates a disputable presumption that a blood-borne infectious disease developing or manifesting itself with respect to health care workers, as defined, arises out of and in the course of employment, for the purposes of worker's compensation. Provides that a health care worker, who is permanently incapacitated for the performance of duty as a result of a blood-borne infectious disease shall receive a service-connected disability retirement under the County Employees Retirement Law of 1937 ('37 Act).

The Governor stated in his veto message:

"�This measure is similar to SB 361, which I vetoed last year. SB 1609 places the burden of proof on the employer by requiring the employer to prove the disease was not the result of an industrial injury. There is no evidence that employees are being denied service-related retirement benefits for illnesses that are work related�."

SB 1713  Peace  Workers' Compensation: leave of absence for disability

This bill declared legislative intent to enact legislation that extends disability and leave of absence benefits in lieu of workers' compensation benefits to employees of the Youth and Adult Correctional Agency (YACA) and employees of the State Department of Mental Health (DMH) who are assigned to a correctional facility and who have peace officer status.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�While this bill only contains intent language, implementing its provision would have a fiscal impact of $8.5 million annually, for the Department of Corrections alone. Given our revenue shortfall, we cannot afford at this time the additional General Fund spending needed to implement this bill."

Agricultural Employees

AB 2596  Wesson  Agricultural mediation procedures
Chapter 1146, Statutes of 2002

This bill makes changes, both technical and substantive, to SB 1156 (Burton), which establishes a procedure for the resolution of agricultural labor contract disputes by mandatory mediation and conciliation. This bill (1) limits the number of cases any party can take to mandatory mediation to 75; (2) provides the parties have had to have attempted to bargain a contract for at least one year for cases predating the effective date of the bill; and (3) sunsets on January 1, 2008.

SB 1156  Burton  Agricultural mediation procedures
Chapter 1145 Statutes of 2002

This bill establishes a procedure for the resolution of agricultural labor contract disputes by mandatory mediation and conciliation. If enacted, this measure would authorize an agricultural employer or a labor organization representing agricultural workers to file with the Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB), any time following 90 days after certification of the labor organization, a declaration that the parties have failed to reach a collective bargaining agreement. This bill applies only to an agricultural employer who has employed or engaged 25 or more agricultural employees during any calendar week in the year preceding the filing of a declaration.

Agricultural Employees - Vetoed

AB 325  Reyes  Protection of Farm Workers

This bill (1) prohibits a farm worker from being required to cash a paycheck at a location designated by a labor contractor, grower, or agricultural employer, or being charged a fee for doing so; and (2) assigns misdemeanor penalties for wrongful conduct and increases for charging employees transportation costs to from the job site. Additionally, this bill specifies that, in addition to the Labor Commissioner, the Highway Patrol has authority to enforce the prohibition against charging fees for transportation.

In his veto message, the Governor states:

"�There are proposals in this measure that I fully support and other proposals that I oppose. For example, it is certainly reasonable to prohibit any persons misrepresenting farmworkers into believing that their employment or employee benefits will be jeopardized unless they pay a fee for transportation to and from the worksite.

It is also reasonable to prohibit a farm labor contractor or agricultural employer from requiring their employees to cash paychecks at designated locations.

On the other hand, it is not reasonable to tell an agricultural employer that he or she cannot charge a fee for cashing that paycheck. Furthermore, there are other burdensome requirements in this otherwise well-intentioned measure that prevent me from signing this bill."

SB 1736  Burton  Binding Arbitration for Farm Workers

This bill creates a process for resolving collective bargaining disputes between agricultural employers and employees by requiring the Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) to assign a third party arbitrator to make binding decisions establishing the terms of a collective bargaining agreement in instances where an employer of agricultural workers and a labor organization representing such workers reach an impasses in negotiations. This bill attempts to guarantee that agricultural employers and the unions representing their employee will be covered by a collective bargaining agreement within a relatively short period of time after certification of the union.

In his veto message, the Governor states:

"�I have signed AB 2596 (Wesson) and SB 1156 (Burton) which provide a mechanism to bring to resolution unresolved labor disputes between farmworkers and growers.

In light of my action on those bills, I am returning SB 1736 without my signature."

Public Works/Prevailing Wage

AB 1000  Simitian  Public works: design build projects
Chapter 637 Statutes of 2002

This bill authorizes three named community college districts, and five additional projects chosen by the Community College Chancellor, to enter into design-build contracts for the design and construction of projects that exceed $10 million in cost, until January 1, 2008. The three community college districts that would be authorized to utilize design-build contracts are: a) The Los Angeles Community College District; b) The San Jose-Evergreen Community College District.; c) The San Mateo Community College District. Furthermore, this bill establishes a procedure to pre-qualify design-build entities, including the use of a questionnaire developed by the Department of Industrial Relations.

AB 1448  Maddox  Prevailing wage laws: violations
Chapter 28 Statutes of 2002

This bill deletes sunset date of January 1, 2003 from currently operative Labor Code §§ 1776 and 1813 and repeals alternative sections that would have become effective on that date. These changes will retain current operative provisions of law that make a subcontractor (instead of the prime contractor) of a public works project responsible for maintaining payroll records for his or her own employees and providing certified copies of these records as required by law. The bill also makes the subcontractor liable for penalties for failure to provide copies payroll records timely or to pay overtime wages due employees.

AB 1506  Wesson  Public works
Chapter 868 Statutes of 2002

This bill requires an awarding body to either initiate and enforce, or contract with a third party to initiate and enforce a labor compliance program if the awarding body elects to use funds made available through any of the specified Public Education Facilities Bond Acts. This bill becomes effective only if the Public Education Facilities Bond Acts are passed in the general elections.

SB 278  Machado Public works project: Water Security Clean Drinking Water
Coastal and Beach Protection Act of 2002
Chapter 892, Statutes of 2002

This bill requires that the body awarding a contract for a public works project financed in any part with funds made available by the Water Security, Clean Drinking Water, Coastal and Beach Protection Act of 2002 (Act) adopt and enforce a labor compliance program. This bill only becomes effective if the Act is passed in the general election.

SB 972  Costa  Public works: prevailing wage
Chapter 1048, Statutes of 2002

This bill provides for exemptions for self-help housing, housing assistance and housing rehabilitation projects from prevailing wage requirements for the construction or rehabilitation of privately-owned residential projects. According to the author, this bill is intended to clarify the application of SB 975 (Alarcon), Chapter 938, Statutes of 2001, and is the result of extensive discussions between the Davis Administration, the State Building and Construction Trades Council, and affordable housing advocates.

SB 1759  Johannessen  Public Works: local agencies
Chapter 976, Statutes of 2002

This bill allows, until January 1, 2006, the cities of Brentwood, Hesperia, Vacaville, and Woodland to use the design-build method of contracting, under the same guidelines as the counties that are currently permitted to use this method; and for projects costing $5 million or more, these cities would be permitted to award contracts based either on the lowest responsible bid or the best value, as defined. It outlines that the cities must utilizes a prequalification questionnaire developed by the Department of Industrial Relations.

Occupational Safety and Health

AB 2118  Dickerson  Cal/OSHA: volunteer firefighters
Chapter 368, Statutes of 2002

This bill delays the date on which volunteer firefighters become subject to the Occupational Safety and Health Act (Cal-OSHA) from January 1, 2002 to January 4, 2004; except for claims that arose from January 1, 2002 to the effective date of this bill. The purpose is to allow smaller firefighting districts, who rely upon volunteer firefighters to a large extent, sufficient time to comply with standards applicable to voluntary firefighters.

AB 2837  Koretz  Safety in employment
Chapter 885, Statutes of 2002

This bill revises reporting and investigation procedures of workplace accidents resulting in serious injury or death and the prosecution of criminal violation of such accidents, add civil and criminal penalties for failure to report accidents, requires the state to make efforts to ensure that limited-English proficient persons can communicate and establishes a special account in the General Fund to receive private and public contributions for the general enforcement of the law.

SB 1886  Torlakson  Elevators and other conveyances
Chapter 1149, Statutes of 2002

This bill establishes a comprehensive statutory scheme to regulate elevator safety.

(SB 1886) is intended to reduce the potential for accidents associated with conveyance construction, repair and use. It is also intended to improve the effectiveness of the Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) to enforcement of elevator and conveyance safety by increasing the available pool of qualified personnel whose activities affect elevator safety and by making elevator safety standards in California more consistent with national standards.

Occupational Safety and Health-Vetoed

AB 2845  Goldberg  Safety in Employment

This bill required the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board to revise ergonomic standards designed to reduce repetitive motion injuries in the workplace on or before July 1, 2004.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�California, as the only state in the nation that is successfully enforcing a regulation to address repetitive motion injuries, has proven itself to be a leader in the area of ergonomics. Our regulation is the result of significant debate, study and public comment, and represents a concerted effort to balance legitimate, competing concerns regarding repetitive motion injuries.

The Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board has received a petition requesting that it amend California's standard on repetitive motion injuries and I believe that the Board's consideration of that petition will allow for the best evaluation of the existing regulation as well as the relative merits of amending it. In an effort to allow that process to occur, I am returning this bill without my signature."

AB 2988  Assembly Labor &
 Employment Committee
Cal/OSHA Targeted Inspection and Consultation

This bill would have reinstated the legislative provision, which required the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) have an agreement with the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) for the collection of delinquent assessments that are due by employers under Labor Code sections 62.7 and 62.9 for funding the Cal/OSHA Targeted Inspection and Consultation Fund. This bill reinstates the authority and mandate for DIR to enter into an agreement with FTB for the collection of delinquent assessments that are due from employer pursuant to LC 62.9.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�This legislation is not necessary in that even after the repeal of the authority formerly conferred by the Revenue and Taxation Code 19290.1, the Department has maintained in effect the agreement with FTB for the collection of delinquent assessments. Section 2 of the bill confirmed that this legislation was merely declaratory of existing law and that general authority exists even in the absence of a specific statute to formulate an agreement by DIR and FTB for collection of delinquent assessments."

Apprenticeship Standards

AB 1087  Calderon  Electrician Certification
Chapter 48, Statutes of 2002

This bill

(1) requires DAS to issue cards to electricians who become certified pursuant to specified standards;

(2) requires continuous appropriation of fees to pay for supplying certification cards;

(3) exempts work performed with temporary or portable electrical devices;

(4) requires electricians, as specified, to obtain certification by January 1, 2005;

(5) exempts apprentice electricians and uncertified workers under certain conditions from certification, and makes provisions for such apprentices and uncertified workers to obtain certification;

(6) exempts persons with a Class C-10 electrical contractor license issued by the Contractors State License Board from these certification provisions;

(7) requires DAS to (a) make information available in non-English languages; (b) administer certification tests in non-English languages; (c) ensure the availability of alternatives to meet education requirements and that there are procedures to grant credit for other training and on-the-job experience;

(8) requires DAS to report to the Legislature by January 1, 2004, on the status of the program; and

(9) established a committee to establish written educational curriculum standards for

certain training programs.

AB 1131  Frommer  Apprenticeship Standards
Chapter 11 Statutes of 2002

This bill restricts state funding of apprenticeship training programs to those programs which have been approved by the Division of Apprenticeship Standards of the State Department of Industrial Relations.

AB 2743  Lowenthal  Barbering & Cosmetology Apprenticeship
Chapter 580 Statutes of 2002

This bill allows licensed apprentices in barbering cosmetology, skin care, or nail care that have completed at least 75 percent of their apprenticeship program to submit an application for admittance to the Bureau of Barbering and Cosmetology's licensing examination. This bill's purpose is to allow flexibility by allowing them to submit a preapplication for admission to the Bureau's licensing examination when they have competed 75% of their apprenticeship program. Apprentices failing the examination on their first try can instantly reapply to retake the examination before their current apprenticeships license expires, thus enabling them to continue their employment.

Apprenticeship Standards-Vetoed

AB 2827  Diaz  Apprenticeship programs: graduation rate study

This bill requires DIR to conduct a study on the graduation rates of approved apprenticeship programs, and report the results to the Legislature by December 1, 2003, and post the results on DIR's website. The study also includes an analysis of the graduation rates of women and minorities.

The bill also requires DIR to conduct a five-year graduation study of all construction-related apprenticeship programs, report results to the Legislature by December 1, 2003, and also post the results on its interest web site.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�It is my understanding that DIR already has this data. Under the current budgetary constraints facing the State, undertaking a study of existing data can take resources away from other priority programs within DIR. Therefore, in place of signing this bill, I am directing DIR to release this data in a timely manner."

Other Legislation

AB 1900  Nakano  Labor History Week
Chapter 366 Statutes of 2002

This bill deems the first week of April to be Labor History Week and encourages school districts to commemorate that week with appropriate educational exercises that make pupils aware of the role that the labor movement has played in shaping California and the United States.

AB 2007  Calderon  California Insurance Guarantee Association
Chapter 431, Statutes of 2002  

This bill expands the California Insurance Guarantee Association (CIGA), Board of Governors from 9 to 13 members, and provides funding (through the extension of a surcharge) to fund payments to injured workers and other insured losses caused by insolvent insurance companies.

AB 2078  Kelley  Joint Powers Authority: self insurance
Chapter 750, Statutes of 2002

This bill amends Government Code Section 6527 to define self-insurance claims are one of the types of claims that private healthcare employers may self insure with public sector healthcare employers in a joint powers authority (JPA). The bill also clarifies that the Self-Insurers' Security Fund has no liability for workers' compensation claims of private healthcare employees whose employer is a member of a healthcare workers' compensation JPA.

AB 2913  Firebaugh   Bracero workers: statutes of limitations
Chapter 1070, Statutes of 2002  

This bill would prevent defendants from using the current statute of limitations to dismiss legal actions filed by, or on behalf of, Bracero workers for failure to pay withheld wages, provided that the claim is filed on or before December 31, 2005. This bill seeks to enable Bracero workers, or their heirs, to sue for these wages that were withheld between 1942 and 1950 despite any applicable statue of limitations.

SB 1236  Alarcon  Labor & Workforce Development Agency
Chapter 859, Statutes of 2002

This bill implements the Governor's Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 2002, which creates a Labor and Workforce Development Agency (Agency) in state government and creates a Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development (Secretary.)

Other Legislation-Vetoed

AB 1309  Goldberg  Employment: reports on gender and ethnicity

This bill codifies an existing regulatory requirement that employers and labor organizations with 100 or more members file annually a report on the gender and ethnic composition of their workforce with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH).

This measure would make it an unlawful practice for employer, labor organizations and apprenticeship programs, as specified, to fail to annually file a report with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), regarding the gender, ethnicity and job classification, the composition of its employees, membership and participating apprentices.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�Although the bill has merit, it requires an employer to submit specific information on the race, sex, and job classifications of its workforce but does not provide for the confidentiality of these records. Similar information reported under federal requirements is kept confidential. Unfortunately, this bill does not contain that same protection.

In addition, given the fiscal problems facing our state an the budget reductions imposed by the Legislature, I cannot sign a measure that will increase the workload for the DFEH when they are making every effort to focus their limited resources on investigating allegations of discrimination and civil rights violations."

SB 1652  Sher  Athlete Agents

This bill repeals and recasts the current law (known as the Miller-Ayala Athlete Agents Act) governing the conduct of athlete agents and replaces it with provisions based upon the Uniform Athlete Agent Act, developed by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. The bill requires athlete agents to register with the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) and permits the Department to issue registration certificates based upon the application forms and certificates of other states with similar registration requirements.

SB 1652 was a reintroduction of SB 694 from last year, which was passed by both the Senate and the Assembly, but was vetoed by the Governor.

In his veto message, the Governor stated:

"�I previously indicated that I would be open to considering a bill that places this new regulatory program within the Department of Industrial Relations. This bill does that.

Unfortunately, the State is now facing a severe fiscal environment coupled with a requirement from the Legislature to reduce an additional 7,000 positions in the current year. Given these factors, it is very difficult to assume new responsibilities."