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California Chamber of Commerce 201l list of Job Killer legislation

Original post made by Allan Zaremberg , Atherton: West of Alameda, on May 25, 2011

This morning, CalChamber is releasing our 201l list of Job Killer legislation. This year’s list features 28 bills that, if signed into law, would increase costs for employers, lead to more regulations and litigation, and create further barriers to investment for companies hoping to do business here and to hire California workers. It is important to note that the first step in an economic recovery program is to do no more harm to the economy. Yet, proponents of anti-business legislation are ignoring California’s obvious and painful economic situation. Apparently, they think California’s economy can withstand additional pressure from new regulatory and legislative burdens. They are simply unwilling to accept the unfortunate reality that California has the second highest unemployment rate in the country (even higher than Detroit’s!) and is currently ranked near the bottom when it comes to business climate.

In recent days, there have been stepped up efforts by front groups for labor and trial attorneys to discredit the job killer designation. It shouldn’t be any wonder that advocates of pending anti-business legislation are trying to divert attention away from the language of these potential job killing regulations and focus instead on the California Chamber of Commerce because we are willing to stand up for jobs and the economy. Whatever argument is used to try to undermine the job killer label, the facts remain. Employers are under tremendous stress in this uncertain economy and the cumulative impact of all of the California-only mandates and costs are killing investment here. That should be clear from the recent CEO Magazine report placing California at the bottom of the list of business friendly states.

It is imperative that policy makers understand that efforts to dismiss the impact of onerous laws and regulations will only keep more Californians from getting back to work. To see a full copy of the 2011 Job Killer list, please click on this web link

Web Link

Comments (25)

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 25, 2011 at 2:28 pm

When there are no more of those evil, nasty businesses who pay those taxes and support those employees, perhaps then California will wake up.

I've started and/or run about a dozen companies in California, most right here in the Bay Area.

No more.

Posted by Libertarian Paradise north
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 25, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Well, the horrors!

From the decidedly one-sided Chamber link, let's have some fun with THEIR slanted descriptions!

"Employee Safety Risk " Can't have that! it might cost jobs (but so what if it kills a breadwinner!)

"Agricultural...Attempts to limit employees’ ability to independently and privately vote for unionization in the workplace" Aw, heck yeah! Those farm workers shouldn't be able to join a union. They make so much already and have such a great job!

"Climate Change Tax Increase" True, building levees around the bay to combat sea level rise is a job GROWER!

"benefit different than the federal family leave act by significantly expanding the category of individuals with serious health conditions for whom an employee can take a leave of absence" Yeah! Let your wife work the factory line while you get over that cancer thing.

"by inappropriately banning all food vendors from using polystyrene foam food service containers, ignoring the numerous environmental benefits associated with polystyrene products" Who knew strofoam was GOOD for the environment?

"Regulatory Burden - Creates an unnecessary, unenforceable and unconstitutional regulatory burden..." yup, we learned from Wall Street and BP that regulations are for wimps!

Obviously, I know little about any of these individual bills. And you and I will learn nothing from this flack's posting (under Allan's name) of one-sided opinion for the benefit of corporate interests at the expense of our state's ability to collect revenue, and against working people.

Call your rep and get their side.

Posted by Joe
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on May 25, 2011 at 2:40 pm

Wouldn't life be so much better for all of us if we could just let business people and former business people run things? If we could just let government be run like a business? If the art and science of the study of the side effects of business operations and business practices were relegated to the sidelines where they should be because business has no track record of needing oversight? If businesses could pull up stakes and find places more to their liking to conduct their operations while continuing to live in places that don't have to weather the side effects and leave the local economy to its own devices? (Oh sorry, that's already been happening -- in spades.)

Posted by peter carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 25, 2011 at 2:58 pm

peter carpenter is a registered user.

Joe - it is not the black-white that you portray. Of course every piece of proposed legislation has some benefits and some costs. The issue is to not destroy the private sector from which ALL revenues ultimately flow by biting it to death by a million small things no one of which is a killer but all of which together would be fatal.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 25, 2011 at 5:59 pm

George McGovern, the former senator and Democratic presidential candidate who for years personified our California-style of business (over) regulation, wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed piece decrying the government regulations that had helped drive his Connecticut inn OUT OF BUSINESS. McGovern was forced to comply with all sorts of new regulations when he wanted to remodel his century old bed and breakfast. Instead of complying, he shut it down and cited the regulations HE HELPED PASS as the culprit.

These regulations often sound good and make you feel good... but they always have a cost, both in dollars and employment. Let's take the Americans with Disabilities Act, for instance. No doubt a good idea to make reasonable accommodations to allow people access to businesses. But when that forces a small mom and pop store to spend tens of thousands of dollars to retrofit a bathroom to be wheelchair compliant - even if inaccessible to the public - they will (a) go out of business, (b) start their business somewhere else, or (c) never start their business. If you've ever tried to start a business locally, especially one that deals with the public, the permitting process can be overwhelming.

Are these regulations a good idea? Sometimes. Is there a real price to pay for them? Definitely.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 25, 2011 at 6:08 pm

From Wikipedia:

In 1988, using the money he had earned from his speeches, the McGoverns bought, renovated, and began running a 150-room inn in Stratford, Connecticut, with the goal of providing a hotel, restaurant and public conference facility. It went into bankruptcy in 1990 and closed the following year.

In 1992, McGovern's published reflections on the experience appeared in The Wall Street Journal and the Nation's Restaurant News. He attributed part of the failure to the early 1990s recession, but also part to the cost of dealing with federal, state and local regulations that were passed with good intentions but made life difficult for small businesses, and to the cost of dealing with frivolous lawsuits.

McGovern wrote, "I ... wish that during the years I was in public office I had had this firsthand experience about the difficulties business people face every day. That knowledge would have made me a better U.S. senator and a more understanding presidential contender."

Keep passing those well intentioned regulations...

Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 26, 2011 at 6:31 am

Very pertinent opinion piece in today's SJ Mercury:

Regulations and abusive lawsuits drive companies out of California

"it costs about $250,000 more to open a restaurant in California than in Texas."

Web Link

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 8:03 am

Just keep it up, California. Utopia is clearly in sight.

Posted by Libertarian Paradise north
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 26, 2011 at 10:00 am

Another flame by the CRA.

It's an opinion piece, without substantiation of any claims, by a QSR operator. I know a fellow who runs multiple units of the leading brand in SF. He complains all the time. But move to run units in another state?

We emailed on this article. He laughed.

A couple things, about how slanted it was: "Puzder said he has had to fire managers who insisted on working more hours than the state allows" this doesn't even pass a quick sanity check.

He fired them?!? If you've got a good manager, he can follow your instructions, or work around it. He fired someone because he didn't want them, not because the manager was working too hard.

If he did fire his hard workers? He'd be out of business in a jiffy.

The court system is the best friend of business.

A million lawsuits? Yup. Damn straight. And half of them are filed by businesses against other businesses.
* More than half of all companies have filed a lawsuit in the last year.
* 74% of large companies and 32% of small companies initiated a lawsuit in the past year.
* U.S. companies filed 2.5 times the number of lawsuits as U.K. companies.
* The 3 most active U.S. jurisdictions for lawsuits are:
1) California
2) Texas (uh-oh, he's moving to the libertarian utopia of texas!!!)
3) New England

Parking restrictions? "Restaurants are on the hook to comply with a slew of other regulations, such as parking regulations."

Omigawd!!! This DAMN STATE wants retailers to provide adequate parking! Let's stack a QSR on top of a CVS on top of a JiffyLube and moan about the requirement for a parking lot!

Who here gives a darn about parking?!?!

Oh, yeah. Maybe folks here DO care about evil regulation, after all.

"Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of the Atherton: Lindenwood neighborhood, on Aug 25, 2010 at 6:12 pm

Paul states:"The definition of Gross FAR has been better codified since 1906 was approved. The argument for excluding non-occupiable space, in my opinion, is that it should not be counted toward parking requirements."

My only concern is that is this definition is being uniformly applied to all projects?"

"Posted by POGO, a resident of the Woodside: other neighborhood, on Feb 3, 2011 at 8:57 pm

... If she said some of her customers complained about the limited parking, why not accept it?"

Posted by Almanac Reader
a resident of another community
on May 26, 2011 at 1:06 pm

to Pogo:

You quoted and Wikipedia in this thread. One comment regarding that reference. Wikipedia is known for its errors. I am not saying that what you posted was incorrect, but when most people read anything citing Wikipedia they immediately dismiss its validity. There is not one high school or college that will allow a student to use anything from Wikipedia in research or a written paper. Professors and teachers are very firm on this, as Wikipedia is a site where anyone can write anything, without any backup or validation. (This Town Square site gets more scrutiny by the editors than Wikipedia does--no one corrects it)

Again, not saying you were wrong, but when most read the word "Wikipedia" they don't take the information seriously.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Almanac Reader -

You are absolutely correct about Wikipedia. Although there is some evidence that it is remarkably accurate (especially when subject to review), it is certainly not a high level source.

In this case, I was familiar with the issue because I've heard Senator McGovern speak about it. The Wikipedia section was written very succinctly and I saw no reason to edit or paraphrase it... and I wanted to give appropriate attribution.

Remember, even the esteemed New York Times has a corrections page.

Posted by Atherton Resident
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 26, 2011 at 4:47 pm

Almanac Reader - You are correct about Wikipedia.

Pogo - Yes, the New York Times has a corrections page, as do most newspapers. Unfortunately Wikipedia does not.

I just asked my daughter, a college student, and two of her friends who are at our house right now, to read this article and the posts. Each had several comments and observations. Each one, independently, also said that they did not even read your post quoting Wikipedia. I asked why and they said that they could not trust any Wikipedia quote as legit. They all said that they were in no way ever allowed to use or cite Wikipedia in any school papers. My other kids confirmed this and said they never even go there as they are taught that it is unreliable. So, even though you found the quote to be valid and succinct, most people in the know about Wikipedia will just disregard. I agree that there is probably some correct info there, but as anyone in the world can write anything they want on Wikipedia, it is definitely not a high level source, and more and more not any source that should be trusted. Too bad, as it could be of value if it weren't so full of inaccuracies and undocumented information.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 5:45 pm

Here's the EXACT same information from the Washington Post.

Web Link

Everybody happy?

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 5:48 pm

I didn't know that readers of The Almanac's "Town Square Forum" required the same level of veracity as a Stanford thesis review board!

Posted by Atherton Resident
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 26, 2011 at 6:11 pm

Pogo - I don't think the sarcastic response is really necessary. I wasn't disagreeing with your comments on the topic of the article, only pointing out that I agree with Almanac Reader. And I found it interesting that my kids and their friends have been taught to disregard Wikipedia as a trusted source of legitimate information. I was not attacking you personally. In no way is there a "Stanford thesis review board." Kids in grade school, high school and college are now told not to use this source. As I said, too bad, because Wikipedia does have some good info, but it is virtually impossible to tell what's true and what's not, due to the nature of the way it is set up.

I just wanted to let you know, that even though your comments were good ones, some skipped over them due to the reference to Wikipedia.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 6:52 pm

Atherton Resident -

I was only trying to be funny. No offense taken and apologies if you felt I was being sarcastic.

Your point is well taken!

Posted by Atherton Resident
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 26, 2011 at 8:04 pm

Pogo - No worries. Enjoy your comments and perspective on issues.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 8:28 pm

From today's Washington Post:

"The Obama administration said it would seek to scale back or eliminate hundreds of regulations affecting workplace safety, environmental protection, endangered species, hospitals and other subjects, saying the measures would save businesses billions of dollars a year."

Web Link

I guess the Obama administration realizes the adverse impact these "do good" regulations have on employment even if California (and many people posting on this site) don't.

Posted by Libertarian Paradise south?
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 26, 2011 at 10:01 pm

Lighten up, Pogo!

I bet LP north knows there's a happy medium somewhere, even if his posts don't reflect it (the anti-regulation crowd on this thread don't reflect a lot of tolerance on their posts, either!)

Not all regs are bad; for example, I appreciate the payroll rules being followed when I worked for others. Not all regs are good, some go too far.

Posted by Elroy Lee
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on May 27, 2011 at 1:58 pm

One of the biggest wastes of business income locally is paying chamber of commerce dues, who does nothing but ask for more money.

Posted by [Portion deleted]
a resident of another community
on May 27, 2011 at 5:33 pm

The State knows what is best for us. All businesses must genuflect to the greater good of a State run economy. The State knows what is best!

[Editor's note: poster's pen name deleted for violating requirement to be respectful to other posters]

Posted by PALLBEAR
a resident of another community
on May 30, 2011 at 9:57 am

On the other hand, I have found a WORLD of misinformation right here with even the editors as well as from every "regular" poster who has spent the better part of their days for years, posting useless and very often total junk in their web links.
Now, it apears that most all of you are complaining and blaming sources outside of the ALMANAC NEWS online rapportage for the condition of this area, the state, DC, and the world.
That is why I read Carpenter, POGO and that Menlo (crybaby)after I cover the world with the BBC news and then spend only 15 minutes reading what these locals actually believe is the truth. I am quoted more in the world press than any of the above mentioned who cannot agree or have helped bring down our local govt. with their daily ranting.

Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on May 30, 2011 at 5:44 pm


Thank you for your thoughtful post and I appreciate the fact that, even though I am not quoted in the world press (at least under my pseudonym), you read my posts.

Although you may think my "ranting" about our excessive government spending, I think the current economic situation - rising and uncontrollable deficits, having to raise the debt ceiling, proposals to raise taxes, widespread public employee layoffs, unfunded pension liabilities, service cutbacks, Medicare and Social Security reform, etc. - are all testament that those earlier warnings of problems at the federal, state and local level were, in fact, correct.

You don't have to accept my characterization that this is all unsustainable. Just fasten your seatbelt and enjoy the free fall off the cliff.

Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 30, 2011 at 6:38 pm


you know PALLBEARER is R Gordon, right?

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle

on Jun 5, 2017 at 7:50 pm

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

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