Photos courtesy of Kristin Fuller
Local Legislators Hold Summit on Jobs & Regulations, Part 1
Local Legislators Hold Summit on Jobs & Regulations, Part 2
Local Legislators Hold Summit on Jobs & Regulations, Part 3
Just a couple final comments on the recent Legislative Summit that didn’t make it to print in my newspaper article. Businessman after businessman told stories about specific impacts to their business from California’s over-regulatory climate.
- A local news paper publisher told how his company could actually hire additional people if they weren’t constrained by overtime and break rules. They have people who would prefer to work flex schedules of 4 ten hour days (including many working mothers with small children) but they can’t accomodate them because anything over 8 hours has to be paid overtime. Reporters on the job, chasing a story, actually have to break up their day by taking (and documenting) the mandatory worktime breaks and lunch requirements. Restaurant owners voiced similar complaints.
- Another business owner documented a $60,000 up-front cost and a $20,000 ongoing annual cost required to find and tag every hose and pipe fitting and connection in his facility. Each tag must now be monitored monthly with a sniffer and a report must be submitted to some state agency which goes unread. Due to the nature of his business, the fittings have always been monitored daily as leaks could be catastrophic. Now the state has created an additional overhead requirement of the tagging and unnecessary paperwork as an added cost.
- Another business owner pointed to the capricious nature of code compliance. For seven years the above-ground storage tanks at his facility have been considered in compliance with regulations and the integrity of the tanks monitored daily. A new state inspector came on board and determined that since the tanks were actually in a building they should be classified as ‘underground’ tanks and were subject to a different regulation. Each tank had to be retro-fitted with a built-in sniffer unit at a cost in excess of $80,000 and monthly compliance reporting added another $20,000 per year to the overhead. They were also fined because 2 of the 60 sniffers were installed about 2 inches out of what the inspector considered proper.
- One business owner documented an additional cost of over $1 million per year to his business for trucking water. He cited this cost as a major consideration in a potential move of his company and its 3,500 California jobs to an off-shore location. His company uses water as part of their manufacturing process, The water is then treated to a point where it cleaner than the water that enters the facility. However, state regulations prohibit them from either using the water for on-site irrigation or to dump it down the sewer system. Instead, they have to contract for 4 tankers trucks a day to come to their facility to pick up the water and truck it four miles down the roadwhere it is then dumped into the sewer system adjacent to a sewage treatment facility.
- Finally, we have two local hospitals in the Murrieta area that have not been able to expand their facilities due to a mixture of regulation and politics. The two expansion facilities represent an investment of $94 million by Southwest Healthcare Systems. At one facility a new emergency room which would expand the existing facility (built when our population was about 25% of current) from 8 beds to 38 beds. It also includes a womens care facility, birthing center and the areas first neo-natal intensive care unit and surgi-center. This $54 million facility has been ready to open for 14 months yet sits vacant. Why? Repeated violation cited by state inspectors mainly due to overcrowding in the current ER which would be resolved by opening the new facility. However they won’t let them open the new facility until the overcrowding issues are resolved, a classic Catch 22.
Oh – the problems started for the hospital when they held a vote that kept the unions out. Coincidence? Well, it could be. But the state regulators (for whom there is no oversight or accountability) are mighty cozy with the California Nurses Association as well as the SEIU. This issue has not only cost jobs to the region but has resulted in a local healthcare crisis of sorts as well as a threat to birthing mothers and newborns who must be driven or flown an hour away to Riverside, the next nearest neo-natal care unit.
In their most recent lunacy, the state did allow the hospital to triage and treat emergency room patients in a huge circus-like tent in the parking lot. Immediately adjacent to the $54 million emergency room that sits vacant.
The summit really shined the light on many, many egregious problems within our state that are serving daily to drive higher paying jobs to other states. But until we get rid of the Democratic majority in our legislature, nothing will change. These people are bought and paid for by the major public employee unions, (nurses, teachers, prison workers, seiu). The majority of our Democratic legislators have also never held a real private sector job – they have in one manner or another suckled from the public teat their entire career and know nothing of meeting payroll, running a business, being competitive in a marketplace or anything remotely useful. Until our legislative demographic changes significantly, California will never rise to its full potential again.
If you live in Califnria and continue voting for the same dead-ass hacks, YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM. Get a clue. They are stangling the life out of our state.