LACTATION ROOM BILL SENT TO GOVERNOR

On A 57-13 vote in the Assembly, and then a 28-11 vote in the Senate, the amended bill dealing with lactation rooms in workplaces has been sent to Governor Gavin Newsom.

SB 142 (Weiner; D-San Francisco) initially sought to require lactation rooms in all buildings, was amended twice in the last two weeks to take the building code provisions out of the bill.  While this is a improvement to the bill, we have remained opposed to the bill in light of the fact that that AB 1976 (Limon; D-Santa Barbara) was just signed last year and was substantially similar; we have specifically objected to the fact that this bill seeks additional employer mandates that create potential for PAGA lawsuits, labor issues regarding meal and rest breaks, and has no “safe harbor” provisions for workplaces that cannot accommodate a lactation space due to size or safety issues.

An interesting note is that the Governor’s Department of Finance, agreed with us about cost estimates on the bill and released an analysis stating it would cost the state millions of dollars to comply with construction costs in state buildings.  DOF estimates a cost of $149,000 in each impacted state building and it seems the argument prevailed; while it estimated $50,000 in private buildings.

The Governor has until October 13 to sign or veto the measure.

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