From a legislative standpoint, it was a difficult year on many levels. However, LAPFCA did achieve success in many areas.
Early into the pandemic, we were keenly aware of the uncertainty COVID-19 would bring to our industry and we began to discuss the many challenges that lay ahead and how to address them. LAPFCA contractors questioned if they would be allowed to continue to operate, and should they continue to operate, how to keep workers safe and what would be the impact of the pandemic on their bottom line. There were concerns, separate from the health effects of COVID-19, regarding Cal/OSHA violations, impacts to worker compensation rates, and the ability to protect payment rights. LAPFCA worked to address these issues. We focused, through regulation and the administrative process, on the health and safety of workers, ensuring our industry could continue to deliver projects and protecting our contractor’s businesses.
Our efforts included:
- Securing from the Newsom Administration, during the development of California’s shelter in place orders, state guidelines that defined construction services as an essential business. Ensuring our contractors could continue to operate.
- Pushing Cal/OSHA to develop and release construction industry specific COVID-19 safety guidelines.
- Working with California’s Judicial Council to toll the statute of limitations for any civil action, which includes the enforcement of mechanics’ liens and stop notices, from April 6, 2020 until 90 days after the governor “lifts” the COVID-19 state of emergency.
- Pursuing regulatory protections from the Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau of California and the California Department of Insurance that would exclude from a contractor’s experience modification rate any COVID-19 related incident.
That said, many measures affecting the industry were passed into law this legislative session. Enclosed is an overview of all the pertinent legislation that was passed during the 2020 legislative session that will have an impact on contractors and the construction industry overall.