Mccarty And Hernández Release Legal Opinion On Sacramento’s Minimum Wage Proposal

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Proposed tip carve-out is currently illegal under California law

(SACRAMENTO, CA) – Assemblymembers Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento) and Roger Hernández (D-West Covina) released an opinion today from the Legislative Counsel’s office which holds that the proposal on total compensation rate is illegal.  The opinion was released prior to the Sacramento City Council’s consideration of the report produced by the Minimum Wage Task Force.

“While I applaud the efforts of the Minimum Wage Task Force to take on the difficult task of addressing a raise in the minimum wage for working Sacramentans, I am deeply concerned about discussions regarding carve-outs for specified employees,” said Assemblymember McCarty.  “Paying working women and men a living wage, through a raise in the minimum wage, is the most direct way to ensure that we lift Californians out of poverty.  The goal of building a world class city is indeed laudable, but must include paying for the labor that builds it. I urge the Sacramento City Council to adopt a fair, living wage, uniformly applied to all workers.”

“As Chair of the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment, I strongly support efforts to increase the minimum wage.  However this proposal, particularly its “total compensation” exemption, is simply against the law,” noted Assemblymember Hernández.  “A recent opinion I obtained from the nonpartisan Legislative Counsel confirms that the proposed “total compensation” exemption violates state law.  For this reason, every local jurisdiction that has considered such an exemption has refused to adopt it. Ultimately, it is bad for workers and their families. The restaurant industry introduced state legislation this year to authorize such exemptions, but this effort was rejected.

This anti-worker proposal simply invites unnecessary litigation if the City of Sacramento adopts the “total compensation” exemption.  I stand with Assemblymember McCarty and urge the City Council to adopt a fair minimum wage that leaves no worker behind.”

The Sacramento City Council will be considering the Minimum Wage Task Force proposal later this month.

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