Despite receiving a hostile reception, Senate Republicans reaffirmed their commitment to stimulate the economy by presenting several job creating measures. Today's actions by the liberal majority clearly demonstrate the continued "no" strategy from the past which keeps the state in a constant state of crisis: No to workers, No to business growth, and No to jobs.
Earlier today, the Senate Labor Committee rejected SBX8 70 (Dutton) and SB8X 66 (Cox), which would have allowed employees and employers the opportunity for greater work schedule flexibility to accommodate diverse family responsibilities, reduce commute time, traffic congestion and pollution, and put an end to frivolous lawsuits that are shutting down and driving businesses out of California.
Also, the Senate Environmental Committee did not support SB 8x 57 (Cox), which proposed to delay the costly new diesel engine regulations enacted by The California Air Resources Board that have had an burdensome effect on all transportation sectors. Delaying and analyzing the economic impact these regulations will help keep these small businesses open and workers employed.
As well, the Senate Health Committee failed to pass out of committee SB 8x 65 (Huff), which if enacted would permit out of state healthcare plans and insurers to offer their services in California, offering competition and making healthcare more affordable for everyone.
Specifically, the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee heard but failed to act on SBx6 4 by Senator Roy Ashburn (R-Bakersfield), legislation that would extend and expand the hugely successfully homebuyer tax credit for Californians by $200 million. This measure has bipartisan co-authors, support from industry and labor, and would have created much needed construction jobs and get people buying homes and investing in California communities again.
Senator Dennis Hollingsworth (R-Murrieta), Republican Leader - "The complete rejection of these job creating measures by the Democrat majority is also the complete rejection of any relief from the high unemployment California's families are facing. Rather than siding with the working families of our state in bringing sanity to bureaucratic red tape, and ending frivolous lawsuits, Democrats today sided with the public employee unions, the trial lawyers and the radical environmentalists. It's clear: job creation is a term that is not in the Democrats' dictionary."
Senator Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cucamonga), Senate Republican Leader-Elect - "Unreasonable regulations are killing California businesses," Senator Dutton said. "The measures defeated by Democrats today shows once again that they aren't serious about creating an atmosphere that will help private businesses and their employees to thrive.
"Remember, it takes 25 private sector jobs to create just one government job," Senator Dutton said. "So the only way we're really going to turn the economy around is to help private sector jobs grow and prosper. I will continue fighting to lift the regulatory burdens that tie the hands of businesses and keep them from reaching their full potential."
Senator Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar), Senate Republican Caucus Chair - "When employers are free to choose their health insurance plan, business costs are lowered and increases the potential for job creation or retention. SB X8 65, before being struck down by the Majority Party, sought to do just that – offer more choices, and help to bring more jobs to Californians, stated Senator Bob Huff.
Senator Tom Harman (R-Huntington Beach), Republican Whip - "Republicans have offered real solutions to bring jobs to California. The rejection of those bills today by the Democrat majority highlights the "culture of failure" that continues to permeate this capitol. Small business growth is the only way we are going to survive this recession. More government is not. This is a state made up of hard working people, but jobs are vanishing. Californians deserve real job creating measures--not some patched-up legislation that adds to our growing deficit."
Senator Sam Aanestad (R-Grass Valley) -"I'm disappointed that the Senate Health Committee rejected a bill today that would have given consumers many options for choosing a health care plan -- and choosing that plan at a lower price," said Senator Aanestad. "SBX8 65 represented common sense legislation that would have benefitted all California consumers."
"SBX8 65 didn't mandate anything. It merely would have allowed insurers who are licensed in other states to sell their health care plans and insurance in California," said Senator Aanestad. "This was common sense legislation and I'm disappointed that the Majority Party rejected a plan that would have allowed all Californians to decide what health insurance plan is right for them."
"SBX8 65 truly represented a win-win for all California families," said Senator Aanestad. "I still strongly believe that California consumers should be given a clear choice in deciding what plan best fits their needs – and that choice should be an affordable one."
Senator Roy Ashburn (R-Bakersfield) - "At a time of high unemployment the Homebuyer Tax Credit measure SB 6x 4 will put thousands of Californians back to work while making the American dream of homeownership possible for many more families," said Ashburn. "I urge the Senate's Revenue and Taxation Committee to pass this job creation measure as soon as possible."
Senator Dave Cogdill (R-Modesto) - "In this economic climate, the Legislature should do everything in its power to help Californians receive paychecks instead of unemployment checks. This reasonable measure carefully maintains the balance of protecting both our economy and our environment."