California has a good bill in the legislature which will provide employee protections for the people misclassified as independent contractors by the “Gig-Economy” companyes.

Uber, Lyft and DoorDash are spending almost $100 million to prevent this through the initiative petition process:

Gig-economy giants Uber, Lyft and Doordash have put $30m apiece into a new fund to push a new California ballot measure that would prevent their workers get ordinary benefits like a minimum wage, overtime, workers’ compensation and so on.

The corporations are worried about a new piece of legislation working its way through the legislature in Sacramento that would effectively make their workers employees. The bill, AB5, passed the Assembly in May, has gone through one Senate committee and was cleared by another on Friday, meaning it will now go to the full Senate.

Numerous groups have won exemptions to the provisions in AB5 – doctors, engineers, architects, hair stylists and others – by arguing that that they set their own prices and work directly with their customers. But gig-economy giants have not, meaning that they will be on the hook for employee benefits, which in real terms will increase their cost of labor by 20-30 per cent.

Uber, Lyft and others, including truckers and exotic dancers – have been lobbying fiercely against the new law but seemingly to little avail. With the bill looking increasingly likely to become law, they have struck on a new idea: push a ballot measure that Californian residents will vote on that would undercut the law. 

I would hope that the people of the state of California would vote down what is clearly an attempt to  f%$# their own workers, but there is going to be a lot of money, from some very profoundly unprofitable (not a typo) firms, telling lies in order to keep the VC capital flowing so that their senior management can cash in before their inevitable collapse.

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