Topic: Legislative Action

Article State Budget

Governor’s budget proposes increases for education, financial incentive to return to in-person classes
Legislative Update

Gov. Newsom released the annual January budget proposal for the 2021-22 budget year, totaling $227.2 billion on Friday, January 8. The budget is very different from what lawmakers anticipated six months ago, when the 2020-21 budget was finalized, thanks to much larger than expected tax receipts.  The proposal includes $34 billion allocated to reserves (including the Public School System Stabilization reserve) and as discretionary surplus funding.

Article State Budget

Governor proposes record education funding in state budget

To cap a tumultuous week, today Governor Newsom announced his state budget proposal for the coming year. Despite a struggling economy, and high unemployment, the top line budget numbers are hopeful for public education: a record $85.8 billion for K-14 schools, along with additional funding for teacher recruitment and training, and special education, among other programs. Additionally, the governor estimates that there will be an additional $6.7 billion from the federal government for K-12 as part of the most recent stimulus package.

Four new laws classified employees need to know about
From contracting COVID at work to personnel commission changes

Workers’ Comp classifies on-the-job COVID cases as occupational injuries

Senate Bill 1159 (Hill, D-San Mateo) directs the state Workers’ Compensation system to presume that an employee’s COVID-related illness is an occupational injury and therefore the worker eligible for Workers’ Comp benefits if specific criteria are met.

Article Workers Compensation Student debt Coronavirus

Legislative gains and losses for adjuncts in a time of COVID
Union scores expanded Workers’ Comp support, Student Borrower Bill of Rights

Just as the COVID-19 pandemic severely impacted public education, so too did it impact the California Legislature and CFT’s legislative goals.

What would normally have been a rigorous six-month period to discuss the state budget and legislation, was reduced to two virtual sessions, one running from May 4 to June 19, and the other from July 27 to August 31. This forced the Legislature, which was slated to hear and discuss some 2,390 bills, to shelve consideration of any bills not deemed related to the pandemic, wildfires, and affordable housing.

Article Coronavirus Workers Compensation

New Workers’ Comp law deems corona-related employee illness occupational injury
Quick Facts: SB 1159

On September 17, Governor Newsom signed SB 1159 (Hill, D-San Mateo), which directs the Workers’ Compensation system to presume that an employee’s illness related to coronavirus is an occupational injury and therefore eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits if specified criteria are met. The bill creates a “rebuttable presumption” for healthcare workers, first responders, or workers on any worksite that has an outbreak of COVID-19.

Article Coronavirus

Governor signs 10 important bills to close unprecedented session
Legislative Update

August 31 marked the end of an unprecedented two-year legislative session, one in which the number of bills heard was pared down because of the COVID-19 pandemic and all hearings were held online.

Governor Newsom had until September 30 to sign or veto those bills that made it to his desk. Below is a summary of several CFT priority bills that the governor has either signed or are on his desk awaiting his action. Bills without an emergency clause and signed into law will take effect on January 1, 2021.

Article Student debt

Governor signs union-sponsored Student Borrower Bill of Rights
Sweeping legislation to protect student loan borrowers

Governor Newsom signed CFT co-sponsored AB 376, the Student Borrower Bill of Rights, on Friday, September 25. This critical piece of legislation will bring much-needed reforms to the student loan market and regulate the private sector companies that service both federal and private student loans for California borrowers.

Article Coronavirus State Budget

Pandemic leads to big cuts for education in May Revision
Legislative Update

Governor Newsom released the May Revision to the 2020-21 state budget on May 14. California began 2020 with a solid fiscal foundation. As the proposal notes, the state started the year with a “strong and diverse economy, historic reserves, and a structurally balanced budget.

The state had eliminated past budgetary debts and deferrals and was making extraordinary payments to reduce pension liabilities. In January, a budget surplus of $5.6 billion was projected for the 2020-21 fiscal year. Revenues through March were running $1.35 billion above projections.

Article Coronavirus State Budget

Uncertainty surrounds education budget for coming year
The one known — coronavirus has blown a giant hole in the state budget

The governor and the Legislature know the COVID-19 pandemic has blown a huge hole in the state budget, but they can’t easily project state revenues or the impact on Proposition 98 — the mechanism that provides K-12 schools and community colleges about 40 percent of the state’s General Fund.

Article Part-Time Employment

CFT advances bill for classified staff to close part-time loophole
Legislature's emergency recess delays action

Update: Due to the pandemic and the Legislature’s rearranging of priorities, most union-sponsored bills were not taken up. 

State legislators left Sacramento March 20 after passing emergency legislation to help K-12 schools, individuals, small businesses and non-profits weather the coronavirus pandemic. Significant for classified employees, the legislation — Senate Bill 117 — includes $100 million dollars to purchase personal protective equipment, to pay for supplies and labor related to cleaning schools sites, or both.

Article Coronavirus

Legislature passes three emergency coronavirus bills
Legislative Update

The California Legislature took emergency action yesterday and passed Senate Bill 117 to address several of the issues confronting schools and their employees during the COVID-19 pandemic. SB 17 and two other emergency bills passed by the Legislature will take effect immediately. 

The CFT will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates from the California Legislature. 

Article Coronavirus

CFT introduces new bills, emergency legislative recess delays action
Legislative Update

The CFT was successful in introducing sponsored legislation for 2020. Our new bills address priority issues for the CFT, including providing affordable housing for public school employees, ensuring that school employees who are on extended medical leave receive full pay, requiring charter schools to participate in CalSTRS and CalPERS, and providing support for community college and University of California faculty.

However, due to the coronavirus outbreak and the recent emergency passage of Assembly Concurrent Resolution 189, which enacted a joint legislative recess from March 20 until April 13, it’s unclear when these bills will be heard. 

Article

Know the new laws for 2020
Legislative Update

The governor signed eight CFT-sponsored bills from the 2019 legislative session into law, as well as numerous others important to educators and support staff in California schools and colleges. Below is a summary of significant bills that will become law in 2020. You will also find significant bills vetoed by the governor along with his veto message. The CFT positions are indicated. The next legislative session begins when the Legislature reconvenes on January 6, 2020.

Article Charter schools Maternity Leave Free College

Legislative session ends on strong note for classified
Six-month probation won for K-12 staff in non-merit districts, landmark charter reform

In October, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bumper crop of new laws that will benefit classified staff across the state.

“We did well this year,” said CCE President Carl Williams, “but it also shows how much more we can accomplish if we lobby harder and smarter.”

Article

Governor signs eight union bills, including landmark charter reform
Legislative Update

September 13 marked the end of the first year of the two-year legislative session, in which an unprecedented 10 CFT-sponsored or co-sponsored bills passed the Legislature and made it to the governor’s desk for his consideration. The governor had until October 13 to sign or veto those bills that made it to his desk.

The governor signed eight of CFT’s bills and vetoed two. Six became two-year bills. In addition, the CFT succeeded in securing the enactment of Senate Concurrent Resolution 29, which recognizes the anniversary of the commencement of the UC-AFT representation of librarians.

Governor signs loan forgiveness bill, vetoes paid maternity leave
From the Capitol – On the cusp of good things for part-timers

Budgetarily, it’s been a tough year for winning greater gains for part-timers in Sacramento, but with regard to legislation which CFT succeeded in getting to the governor’s desk, and for legislation already in the wings for next year, part-timers are on the edge of good things.