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November 8, 2017

General Contractors Potentially Liable for Their Subcontractors’ Failure to Pay Wages and Other Fringe Benefits Under Private Works Construction Contracts Entered on or after January 1, 2018

On October 14, 2017, Governor Brown signed Assembly Bill (AB) 1701 into law as California Labor Code § 218.7. This newly enacted law imposes potentially significant liability on general contractors for their subcontractors’ failure to pay wages, fringe, or other benefits to laborers. The following is a brief overview of AB 1701’s application:

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October 23, 2017

Award of Costs to Prevailing Employers Is “Mandatory” When the Plaintiff Rejects a Section 998 Offer and Fails to Obtain a More Favorable Judgment

In the recent case of Sviridov v. City of San Diego (2017) 14 Cal.App.5th 514, the California Court of Appeal found that prevailing employers that make a Section 998 settlement offer to the plaintiff in actions brought under the Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA") are entitled to costs incurred after the plaintiff’s rejection of the offer.

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October 23, 2017

New Legislation Requires Web Posting and Annual Notice of Fraternization Policies

On October 8, 2017, the Governor signed Assembly Bill 500, which adds Section 44050 to the Education Code effective January 1, 2018. Assembly Bill 500 revived aspects of AB 2621, which was passed by the Legislature in 2016 but vetoed by the Governor.

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October 19, 2017

California Employment Legislation Establishes New Training, Leave, and Hiring Obligations for 2018

The 2017 California legislative session closed October 15, 2017, with Governor Jerry Brown waiting until the last days of the session to sign several bills affecting employers. Below is a summary of the employment-related bills that were signed into law and vetoed by Governor Brown. Unless otherwise noted, changes to the law are effective January 1, 2018.

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October 18, 2017

California Governor Signs Bills Banning Criminal History and Salary History Questions on Employment Applications

Days before the end of the 2017 California legislative session, Governor Jerry Brown signed two bills into law, which ban asking about criminal convictions and salary history on employment applications starting on January 1, 2018. Each of the bills is discussed below in more detail.

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October 13, 2017

New Legislation Gives Rights to Student School Board Members

Under Education Code section 35012, a school district must appoint a student school board member upon receiving a petition signed by 10% of high school students in the district or 500 high school students, whichever is less, requesting student representation on the governing board. The current law also allows for submission of a student petition, whether at the same time or separate from the petition for representation, requesting the board allow the student board member(s) to cast a preferential vote. The student’s preferential vote is recorded in the board meeting minutes but does not play a role in determining the final outcome of a vote.

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October 3, 2017

The Supreme Court Will Decide Whether Public Employees Must Pay Agency Fees to Unions

On September 28th, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to decide whether a public sector employee who is not a union member can be required to pay "agency fees" to a union. Twenty-two states, including California, currently compel public employees to pay these fees.

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September 22, 2017

U.S. Department of Education Withdraws Prior OCR Guidance on Campus Sexual Misconduct Under Title IX

On September 22, 2017, under the leadership of Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, the federal Department of Education (Department) withdrew two Office for Civil Rights (OCR) guidance documents and replaced them with new, interim guidance.

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