Legislative Hearings On Tight Schedule

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, March 11, 2005 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

According to key policy committee consultants, sponsors of bills referred to the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee and Senate Labor and Industrial Relations Committee may have only two opportunities to have their bills heard in committee during the month of April. Both of these policy committees meet on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month. With the previous meeting cancellation (Spring Recess on March 18-25 and Cesar Chavez Day on March 28), the month is over for committee hearings.

Committee consultants have advised CMTA that fiscal bills will have priority in the first hearing in April. All other bills must be heard no later than the second hearing in order to meet the deadline for getting bills through policy committees.

However, one bill CMTA supports is scheduled to be heard in Assembly Insurance Committee on March 15th. AB 227 by Assembly Member Lynn Daucher, (R-Brea) would require an employee receiving temporary partial benefits, total disability benefits or necessary medical treatment related to a work related injury or illness to forfeit these benefits and medical treatment if the employee leaves the state for a period exceeding two weeks without written authorization from the employer.

However, the bill would allow the benefits to be reinstated on the written approval of the employer or a finding of the Appeals Board when the employee returns to the state. CMTA understands that the purpose of the bill is to deal with workers leaving the state for long periods of time without notification and may not be available for medical treatment, medical evaluations, depositions etc. An extended absence can delay the claim resolution process and add to claim costs. This bill is designed to fix that problem.
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