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California Local Elected Officials: Protect the Independence of Local Governments

California Local Elected Officials: Protect the Independence of Local Governments

Sign the Letter of Opposition to SCA 7

California’s powerful union leaders are at it again. State lawmakers are backing a bill that would give the state’s public-sector unions veto power over any state or local government decision in California.

That’s why California Policy Center (CPC) is asking local elected officials among California’s 58 counties and 482 city halls to sign CPC’s Letter of Opposition to SCA 7 and tell Sacramento legislators that they oppose this unconstitutional union power grab.

State Senator Tom Umberg’s (D-Santa Ana) proposed Senate Constitutional Amendment 7 (SCA 7) would create a constitutional right to “economic well-being” for government workers, and prohibit California state and local officials from taking any action “that interferes with, negates, or diminishes the right of employees to organize and bargain collectively.”

Though it’s called “The Right to Organize and Negotiate Act,” SCA 7 has nothing to do with organizing or negotiating — rights already firmly established in state and federal law. Instead, SCA 7 will tie the hands of every elected official, endlessly delay local government projects, and make reform impossible. And, it will incentivize trial attorneys to bring countless frivolous lawsuits against local governments. For example, SCA 7 could open the door to union lawyers arguing that a decision to close a school or build a road with non-union labor would interfere with a worker’s constitutional protections.

As former State Senator John Moorlach explains, “Democracy is gone if this passes.”

By privileging the rights of union members over nonunion workers, “SCA 7 will have a major negative impact on the state’s housing, environmental, and economic goals,” said Jason Pengel, chairman of the board of Associated Builders and Contractors. “Not only would this have a huge impact on employment rates in California as well as our economy, but it would also make public projects virtually impossible to complete.” 

Because it proposes a change to the California constitution, SCA 7 will require the approval of two-thirds of the members in each legislative chamber before it is placed on the statewide ballot, presumably in the March 2024 statewide primary election. 

We must act now to stop this disastrous bill before state legislators return from summer recess in August. 

Please join California local elected officials across the state in signing CPC’s Letter of Opposition to the bill that asks Sen. Umberg to voluntarily pull SCA 7 from consideration in the state legislature and protect the independence of local governments in California.

You can add your electronic signature here by August 1, 2023.

For more information, contact Mari Barke, Director, California Local Elected Officials, or Lance Christensen, CPC’s Vice President of Education Policy and Government Affairs. 


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