Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown Statement on Opposing AB 880
Assemblymember Cheryl R. Brown (D-San Bernardino) issued the following statement today regarding her position on AB 880:
“I reluctantly had to oppose AB 880, a bill that was supposed to curb the practice of mega companies forcing employees onto government assisted medical care. While I can agree that no business should generate profits by subsidizing their employees’ medical care with taxpayer dollars, AB 880 was not the remedy many touted it to be.
Upon a stringent review of the penalties and regulations AB 880 would have imposed, I offered amendments that would have strengthened the bill, unfortunately, they were not included in the bill’s final draft. I found this bill to be detrimental to both business and workers in the 47th Assembly District. As the bill is written, AB 880 would have deterred employers from hiring workers who are enrolled in government subsidized healthcare programs. It would have exposed employers to economically crippling litigation, imposed punitive penalties with an arbitrary formula and ultimately eliminated needed jobs.
Just to mention one successful minority business owner who has many fast food restaurants in the Inland Empire, including in my District, nearly 80 percent of his employees are senior citizens or students who work part time and attend high school or college. He offers flexible hours that are compatible with their schedules. AB 880 would include his smaller company of 1,000 employees and ultimately hurt jobs. At time when unemployment is extremely high in my District, we need to promote business growth.
I will continue to work diligently with the author and proponents of AB 880 to find an appropriate and just solution to the problem AB 880 was supposed to fix.”