Summer 2019 Defense Comment 3 T he legislative year is more than half complete in Sacramento, and while the usual 2000 or so bills continue to move through the system, a few key issues clearly predominate. Several relate directly to ADC members and clients. These include privacy, Dynamex, and wildfires. Entire tomes have and will be written about each of these subjects, and space does not permit exhaustive treatment. But here are the highlights of each: Privacy: The package of bills which enacted the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) last year will go into effect on January 1, 2020. There is no realistic chance that this date will be extended. The package was delayed for a year to permit clarifications and refinements as necessary in this incredibly complex area. There are over a dozen bills still alive to modify the CCPA, and the question is: which of the proposals are refinements and clarifications, and which are retreats from consumer protections included in the privacy package? The path to refining CCPA is complicated from both the policy and political perspectives. Some clarifications are simple common sense: AB 25 would establish, for example, that employees are not “consumers” for purposes of CCPA. No one intended that employees could demand deletion of their personnel files. Others get into complicated questions of the interaction of private businesses and governmental agencies on fraud prevention, eligibility for social services, etc. Right now, privacy advocates and business groups are fighting about every word in proposals to amend the CCPA. Politically, the situation is equally complicated. Virtually all of the CCPA reform bills originated in the Assembly and have now moved to the Senate. The bills will be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee, whose Chair is Hannah-Beth Jackson from Santa Barbara. Senator Jackson had proposed a bill to broaden the ability to bring private lawsuits for CCPA violations, and when her bill died in the Senate, she vowed to be especially diligent in examining other proposals for CCPA changes. Clearly, not all of the CCPA bills will succeed in the Senate. Meanwhile, every business in California which is covered by CCPA should be preparing for the January 1st implementation. The simplest test of which companies are covered is for businesses with gross annual revenue over $25 million. Any business meeting this test, or two other more complicated tests, needs to be developing the consumer portals and other requirements of CCPA right now. Dynamex: Few court cases have reverberated in Sacramento to quite the extent of Dynamex. This dramatic change in the classification of independent contractors vs. employees Mega Issues, 2019 Style California Defense Counsel (CDC) Report Michael D. Belote California Advocates, Inc. Continued on page 33