Measures slated to be heard in Assembly committee hearings this week
SACRAMENTO - This week the California State Assembly will consider a series of "good government" measures introduced by Assemblywoman Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield). The legislative package, comprised of Assembly Bills 1946, 1947 and 1948, was proposed to increase government transparency and ensure the prudent use of taxpayer money.
"It's time to enact these long-overdue common sense measures that have been neglected or intentionally blocked by professional politicians in the past," said Assemblywoman Grove. "The people have a right to know that their money is being spent sensibly, and it's shameful that the state legislature has waited this long to put these good government measures into effect."
AB 1946, created in response to the state legislature's recent attempt to stymie newspapers from obtaining state budget documents, would clarify ambiguities in the California Legislative Open Records Act and require the state legislature to assume a standard of maximum disclosure when considering the release of records to the public. AB 1947 would require the legislature to engage in a competitive bidding process for construction and improvements and to disclose internal records pertaining to its contracting decisions. AB 1948 would end the legislature's exemption from the wage and hour laws it imposes on private employers. Under current law, the state legislature is exempt from sections of the California Labor Code concerning issues such as when employees take meal and rest periods, for example.
"Compliance with labor laws is a costly undertaking for business owners, and the legislature shouldn't be exempt from the burdensome regulations they impose on the citizens of California," said Grove of AB 1948. "They should be forced to live under the laws they create."
AB 1947 will be heard in the Assembly Committee on Business, Professions, and Consumer Protection today and AB 1948 will be heard in the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment tomorrow. AB 1946 is slated to be heard in coming weeks.