This proposition would direct the Legislature to decide, upon a two-thirds vote, whether or not to continue the state’s transfer to and from Daylight Saving Time. The proposition projects permanent Daylight Saving Time year around.
This proposition has no moral ground upon which to deliberate acceptance or rejection. It’s a matter of personal or professional choice. Farmers don’t like it. Recreationists do. While CCC IMPACT takes no position, we do urge you, regardless of outcome, to remember to change your smoke detector batteries at least once a year.
Proposition 8: Authorizes State Regulation of Kidney Dialysis Clinics. Limits Charges for Patient Care. Initiative Statute. Recommendation: SUPPORT
Over 66,000 California residents receive dialysis treatments for kidney failure. Dialysis removes the blood impurities the kidneys no longer can filter, and access to regular dialysis care is essential. Missing even one appointment may create complications that can result in organ failure, even death. Most long-term treatment is done on a three-times weekly basis with the bulk of services provided through two for-profit companies.
These two firms have profits five times higher than cost of service charged by an average hospital. Those with private insurance are charged as much as $150,000 per year which is a 350% charge over the actual costs. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) once regulated the percentages that could be charged but with those federal controls now largely removed, dialysis has become a particular cost burden. Private insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and those without insurance at all are carrying the financial load.
This proposition requires dialysis charges be restricted to 115% of direct patient care costs, requires repayments to those overcharged whether private insurance providers or individuals, requires regular reporting on costs, charges, and revenues. Most important, it forbids discrimination against patients based on the source of their payment for care.
As we struggle with finding ways to keep health care both affordable and accessible, this proposition tackles both issues. The reimbursement level is consistent with the standards set by the ACA that worked for both providers and those paying the bills.It is a reasonable solution to a growing crisis of unaffordable health care including for essential life-saving options.
Proposition 10: Expands Local Governments’ Authority to Enact Rent Control on Residential Property. Initiative Statute. Recommendation: SUPPORT
Proposition 10 is another approach to California’s housing crisis. Although the state has 12 % of the nation’s population, we have 22% of the nation’s homeless. Rents for homes and apartments are skyrocketing by double digits in every sector of the state. Because home sale prices have also soared by 40% over the past year, more and more families now rent since saving down payments cannot keep up with the requirements. Sixteen percent of our population pays 50% or more for housing leaving little for other costs, nothing for savings.
The costs add to transportation nightmares with poorer air quality as people are living farther from their jobs to find more affordable housing. City workers– police, fire fighters, teachers–rarely live where they work.
This proposition would do two things. It would abolish the existing Costa-Hawkins law that outlawed rent control on buildings constructed after the late 1970. Second, it would permit cities to create rent control laws that suited their populations. Proposition 10 in no way mandates rent control but does permit it.
There are and always have been negative impacts from rent control. Poor maintenance and upkeep have too often accompanied landlords’ decisions to force people out to raise rents on new tenants. A slowdown in new construction that cannot charge the highest market rates is another. Some of that can be regulated and enforced for the good.
Other housing measures such as the propositions also on this ballot may help, but building affordable housing is slow, meets community resistance on siting. Subsidized housing doesn’t always meet the needs of middle income working families not being poor enough for subsidized housing. not wealthy enough for market rate housing.
Will this measure have some of the unintended consequences of poor sustainability? Probably. But because it is up to local jurisdictions and public policy that must have public input, we can learn from past errors how to do this better. With these reservations in mind, communities may make wiser decision on rent control. It is clear we can no longer wait for other solutions. This is a good step for our working families.
Proposition 11: Requires Private-Sector Emergency Ambulance Employees to Remain on Call During Work Breaks. Changes Other Conditions of Employment. Initiative Statute. Recommendation: OPPOSE
Proposition 11 is proposed by the corporations that own private ambulance services as a way of thwarting a lawsuit on ambulance employee meal and break time. Public sector ambulance employees are now entitled by law to meal and other breaks without having to be on call. They are not paid for that time unless emergencies pull them into service at which point they are paid overtime.
The ambulance companies do not wish to pay overtime or hire enough supplementary staff to be on call while others are eating or resting. They want straight time without penalties for intruding on relief time. This is a safety issue since the high stress of emergency responder work requires breaks and meal times in peace. Obviously circumstances can intrude, but this rationalizes unsafe work practices without penalty for the employer. While the bill offers training and mental and emotional health supports, it is not enough to offset the real harm that unrelieved daily stress would impose by making every emergency ambulance driver on call for the entirety of every shift.
Proposition 12: Establishes New Standards for Confinement of Certain Farm Animals; Bans Sale of Certain Non-Complying Products. Initiative Statute. Recommendation: OPPOSE
In 2008 California Council of Churches IMPACT supported Proposition 2 that would improve the quality of confinement for farm animals. Federal standards and legal findings affected most animals but not chickens.
Our concern for the humane treatment of chickens rested on two issues: chickens are aggressive toward one another and will kill or maim one another when overcrowded. Highly crowded cages made attacks commonplace. This led to the egg industry’s practice of debeaking – cutting part of the beaks off – to prevent chickens from seriously harming one another.
Proposition 2 called for changes in cage sizes that would stop over crowding and thereby reduce the need for debeaking. Space requirements for each chicken ere based on animal behavior: be able to spread wings, turn around, lie down all without interfering with other chickens, set a decent standard of care.
Proposition 12 reverses that legal standard. While it calls for “cage free” as a goal, it permits vastly reduced space per chicken and still does not outlaw debeaking and other inhumane practices. Rather than basing the standard on chicken behavior, it requires 1 foot square of space per bird, far too small a space even in “cage free” settings. This is a setback in the humane treatment of chickens
As in the earlier Proposition 2, standards for other farm animals is not seriously at issue in Prop 12. To regress on the standards for chickens and undermine what we already passed in compassion is totally unacceptable.
In every statewide election, California Council of Churches IMPACT makes recommendations for the state ballot propositions. We base them on our faith principles and arrive at them through prayerful discernment and careful study. While propositions of a general nature have all been moved to the November General Election ballots, those emanating from the legislature may be on the Primary ballot. We have five measures that have been cleared for this upcoming election in June. More information is available at voterguide.sos.ca.gov/propositions.
We will be mailing our recommendations to our full mailing list for the November election. However, for the June ballot, we will only be distributing our recommendations electronically. Please feel free to download, reproduce, and distribute the attached PDF.
Graphic courtesy UCC.org
The U.S. Senate has failed to "repeal and replace" the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Three GOP Senators plus every Democrat and Independent refused to vote for a poorly crafted bill that would cost tens of millions their insurance and raise premium costs on everyone else.
The straw vote for "repeal and don't replace" is equally doomed by the same votes. Were ACA - Obamacare - simply repealed, it would throw 32 million off health care immediately and would double the cost of premiums over the next several years.
Your calls, emails, FAXes, and visits to your Senators - even friendly ones who already agreed not to harm ACA - were critical in this action today. Americans, united in a single voice about the importance of health care, kept the focus on preserving what we had and not doing harm by repealing some or all of the plan.
Now we can see, as we did in the passage of ACA, that we have strength as citizens and as people of faith.
We will keep watching the next issue - the federal budget - to keep up on cuts to ACA, to Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California) or any other budget cuts, transfers, omissions that might impact our health care. This will include cuts to items that lie outside the operating budget including Medicare and Social Security that have their own accounts but that are targets for cuts nonetheless.
The importance of your advocacy cannot be overstated. Without your voices and your presence, we would be at high risk of losing health care for middle income to very poor people. We won this dispute. We will help you stay on top of new developments. This is not over. We will be called once again we're sure.
Thank you for all you do for justice!
We hope you were able to join us on the Webinar jointly sponsored by California Council of Churches and California Association of Nonprofits.
The preservation of the "Johnson Amendment" passed in 1954 to preserve both church and state, holds that churches may not endorse partisan candidates. This is a great good for faith communities keeping them immune from the political fray and upholding their tax exempt status.
However, there are forces at large that want pastors to endorse from the pulpit. But think how corrupt that will be. Donors can enrich the church and get a tax deduction, all just for the pastor to endorse a particular candidate. And what if some in the congregation want someone else? They would have no say. The entire congregation could be held hostage to whoever has the greatest donation that would influence endorsements.
TOMORROW July 13 House Appropriations is reviewing Section 116 of the Budget to slide revocation of the Johnson Amendment into law.
We must OPPOSE Section 116 as the start of a slippery slope to creating a nightmare of partisanship within our congregations and in all non-profit organizations.
Our allies at California Nonprofits are making it easy for you to express your opposition. Information on the issue and on Section 116 is on their web site with a place for you to sign on to express your opposition. The California members of the Appropriations Committee are also listed with their Washington DC phone numbers.
Here is the link: http://calnonprofits.org/publications/article-archive/539-urgent-action-needed-on-johnson-amendment
Of course you may also call your specific House member via the Capitol Swiotchboard, 202-224-3121.
The vote in Appropriations is at 7 am Eastern Time tomorrow, so please call today! Keeping church and state separate has benefitted both church and state - this is not the time to change our laws that undermine that critical Constitutional principles.
We are sending a reminder about a very important webinar you may want to do with us tomorrow, July 12 at 10 am Pacific Time.
One crucial and under-scrutinized component of President Trump's tax reform package concerns the Johnson Amendment, which guarantees that nonprofits — including churches and religious organizations — cannot endorse candidates for election.
This law, named after then-Senator Lyndon Johnson and signed by President Eisenhower, protects nonprofits from being pressured by donors to support particular candidates in any election. (Nonprofits can take positions on propositions, but not on candidates.)
On Wednesday, July 12th at 10AM (PDT), CalNonprofits and the California Council of Churches will be presenting a fast-paced webinar to educate church and nonprofit members, staff, and board members about who supports and who opposes repeal of the Johnson Amendment, and what the arguments are on each side.
We’re pleased that the National Council of Nonprofits — which is tracking the issue closely in Washington — will be on hand to explain the specifics of the Johnson Amendment and give an up-to-the-minute status report.
• What is the Johnson Amendment and why is it so important to the nonprofit community?
• What are the various groups supporting and opposing repeal, and what are their reasons?
• What are the projections for whether repeal will succeed?
• What steps are nonprofits, religious organizations and foundations taking?
Nancy Berlin, Policy Director, CalNonprofits
Rev.Dr. Rick Schlosser, Executive Director, The California Council of Churches
David L. Thompson, Vice President of Public Policy, National Council of Nonprofits
Tiffany L. Gourley, State Policy Counsel, National Council of Nonprofits
To register for this important webinar as either a Cal Nonprofit member or non-member, please click here
We hope you will join us for the important and timely look at an issue critical to us all.
The Rev Dr Rick Schlosser