Over 150 Ph.D. Economists and Political Scientists Call for
Governor to Suspend AB 5
SACRAMENTO – As Governor Gavin Newsom tweeted that “SCIENCE -- not politics -- must be California’s guide” in its economic recovery, over 150 California economists and professors sent the Governor an open letter calling on him to suspend AB 5.
Using their training in economic and political science, these experts, including Nobel Laureate Vernon Smith, concluded AB 5 is causing “substantial, and avoidable, harm to the very people who now have the fewest resources and the worst alternatives available to them.” The letter explains:
Employment decisions hinge on the costs of distributing risk. While employers are not hiring, gig workers could shoulder myriad tasks that are needed to flatten out the effects of the temporary emergency. It doesn’t really matter how great the pay is, how predictable are the hours, nor how generous the benefits may be, if the law prevents a job from existing in the first place...Blocking work that is needed and impoverishing workers laid-off from other jobs are not the intentions of AB-5, but the law is having these unintended consequences and needs to be suspended.
Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin) has introduced legislation to suspend AB 5 and has urged the Governor to use his emergency powers to do so.
“If Governor Newsom believes in putting science before politics, he should listen to our state’s leading economists rather than special interests and political allies,” Kiley said. “Keeping AB 5 in place while Californians remain at home defies expert opinion, common sense, and basic decency.”
Assemblyman Kevin Kiley represents the 6th Assembly District, which includes the Sacramento, Placer, and El Dorado County communities of Cameron Park, El Dorado Hills, Fair Oaks, Folsom, Granite Bay, Lincoln, Loomis, Orangevale, Penryn, Rocklin, Roseville, and Sheridan.
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CAPITOL UPDATE - APRIL 16, 2020
SUBMITTED BY: CANDICE BURROUGHS l CFRW RESOLUTIONS CHAIR
California’s Assembly Bill 5 (AB5) is a new law that significantly redefines what constitutes an “independent contractor.” Legislative Democrats passed the Bill and Governor Newsom signed it into law in 2019.
Effective January 1, 2020, hiring entities are required to classify workers as employees unless they meet all conditions of the ABC test:
- A. The person is free from the control and direction of the hiring entity in connection with the performance of the work, both under the contract for the performance of the work and in fact.
- B. The person performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business.
- C. The person is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business of the same nature as that involved in the work perform
Who are these independent workers affected by AB5? They are engineers, software developers, designers, therapists, insurance agents, accountants, financial advisers, fitness and yoga instructors, student assistants, consultants, writers, hair stylists, editors, youth sports referees and umpires, drivers, theater companies, singers and artists and nearly 70% are WOMEN!
Recognizing the significant problems with AB5, Senate Republicans offered more than a dozen amendments in 2019 to fix its flaws. Democrats voted down every single one without any discussion.
In 2020, Senate Republicans have introduced 11 bills as part of our legislative package to fix AB5, including the main legislation, Senate Bill 806, which would repeal and replace AB5. In addition, members have introduced bills that would protect many of the industries severely harmed by the anti-worker law and that were left out of AB5. Click here for additional information of Senate Republicans’ legislation.
Our Republican Caucus agrees that AB5 needs to be repealed. We need to help get this story out to EVERYONE — voters, independent contractors, business owners, etc. What Newsom is doing right now with AB5 has the potential to hurt millions of Californians.
To help facilitate the repeal of AB5, Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Reform California, has started a petition campaign to gather thousands of signatures online to demand Govenor Newsom act NOW and suspend AB5.
Please go to DefendFreedomtoWork.org and sign the petition today.
Now is the time to help those who have lost work — and the way we do that is to hold California politicians accountable for any unnecessary burdens they are imposing on small businesses or workers.
Forbes, October 31, 2019 - Data are pre-COVID-19 figures.