Bill Text: CA SB271 | 2019-2020 | Regular Session | Amended


Bill Title: Employment: motion picture production workers.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 13-0)

Status: (Engrossed) 2019-07-11 - Read second time. Ordered to consent calendar. [SB271 Detail]

Download: California-2019-SB271-Amended.html

Amended  IN  Assembly  June 20, 2019
Amended  IN  Senate  March 25, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 271


Introduced by Senator Wiener
(Coauthors: Senators Durazo, Leyva, Mitchell, Pan, and Stern)
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Bonta, Calderon, Friedman, Kalra, Nazarian, and Santiago)

February 13, 2019


An act to amend Section Sections 602 and 603 of the Unemployment Insurance Code, relating to employment, and making an appropriation therefor.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 271, as amended, Wiener. Employment: motion picture production workers.
Existing law provides for the payment of unemployment compensation benefits to eligible persons who are unemployed through no fault of their own. Unemployment compensation benefits are paid from the Unemployment Fund, which is continuously appropriated for this purpose.
Existing law defines “employment,” for purposes of determining eligibility for unemployment compensation benefits, to mean service, including service in interstate commerce, performed by an employee for wages under any contract of hire, written or oral, express or implied. Existing law provides that employment includes an individual’s entire service, performed within, or both within or without this state, if the service is either localized in the state, or, if not localized in the state, some of the service is performed in the state and one of 2 requirements are met, including that the base of operations or place from which such service is directed or controlled is not in any state in which some part of the service is performed but the individual’s residence is in this state.
The bill would provide that for purposes of determining employment of a motion picture production worker when the service is not localized in the state but some of the service is performed in the state, that the worker’s entire service qualifies as employment if their residence is in the state.
Existing law provides that as individual’s service is localized in a state for purposes of unemployment compensation benefits as described above, if the service is either performed entirely within the state or performed within and outside the state and the service outside the state is incidental to the service performed within the state. Existing law further provides that service is incidental for these purposes if it is temporary or transitory in nature, or only consists of isolated transactions.
The bill would provide that service performed by a motion picture production worker outside the state will be considered temporary or transitory for the purposes described above if the worker is a resident of the state, is hired and dispatched from the state, and intends to return to the state to seek reemployment at the conclusion of the assignment outside the state.
The bill would also provide legislative findings and declarations in support of these provisions.
Because this bill would expand the number of persons who are eligible for benefits from the Unemployment Fund, which is a continuously appropriated fund, it would make an appropriation.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: YES   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) The motion picture and television production industry is an essential part of the California economy with its historical and current base in California.
(b) As the industry has evolved through time, so too have its employment relationships and business practices. Originally, production workers were employed directly by major motion picture studios, and almost all work was performed on the studio’s lot.
(c) Today, however, it is more common for work on a given production project to be performed in multiple states.
(d) The motion picture production workforce has also changed over the past several decades. Production workers are craft specialists who are no longer permanently employed by a single employer, but instead move from production engagement to production engagement as a short-term, mobile workforce.
(e) The complexity of employment tax laws creates difficulty in correctly applying those laws to collective bargaining agreements common in the motion picture industry and the highly short-term and mobile workforce present in the motion picture and television production industry. It has become common industry practice for production workers to be employed for the purposes of the Unemployment Insurance Code on short-term production engagements by motion picture payroll services companies specializing in production payroll administration.
(f) The unique nature of the motion picture and television production industry and the involvement of motion picture payroll services companies have made it virtually impossible to clearly determine a base of operations for the production or a place from which production services are directed and controlled and apply the tests in Section 602 of the Unemployment Insurance Code to correctly and consistently determine the appropriate state of “employment.”
(g) It has also led to inconsistent application by employers of the principles for determining if the multistate employment of motion picture production workers is localized to a given state.

(g)

(h) This uncertainty has resulted in confusion and delay for industry workers receiving the appropriate amount of benefits to which they are entitled under the Unemployment Insurance Code.

(h)

(i) In order to address these issues, it is necessary for the Legislature to clarify the application of Section 602 of the Unemployment Insurance Code to the motion picture and television production industry.

SEC. 2.

 Section 602 of the Unemployment Insurance Code is amended to read:

602.
 “Employment” includes an individual’s entire service, performed within, or both within and without, the state if one of the following is met:
(a) The service is localized in the state.
(b) The service is not localized in any state, but some of the service is performed in the state and one of the following is met:
(1) The base of operations, or, if there is no base of operations, then the place from which that service is directed or controlled is in the state.
(2) The base of operations or place from which the service is directed or controlled is not in any state in which some part of the service is performed, but the individual’s residence is in the state.
(c) For the purposes of subdivision (b), employment of an individual who is a motion picture production worker, as defined in paragraph (6) of subdivision (f) of Section 679, includes the individual’s entire service if their residence is in the state.

SEC. 3.

 Section 603 of the Unemployment Insurance Code is amended to read:

603.
 Service is localized within a state if: if either of the following apply:
(a) The service is performed entirely within the state; or state.
(b) (1) The service is performed both within and without the state, but the service performed without the state is incidental to the individual’s service within the state; for example, is temporary or transitory in nature, or consists of isolated transactions.
(2) For purposes of this subdivision, the service outside the state of an individual who is a motion picture production worker, as defined in paragraph (6) of subdivision (f) of Section 679, is temporary or transitory if all of the following are met:
(A) The worker is a resident of the state.
(B) The worker is hired and dispatched from the state.
(C) The worker intends to return to the state to seek reemployment at the conclusion of the assignment outside the state.

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