WORKER COOP STATUTE INTRODUCED INTO CA ASSEMBLY

BREAKING NEWS:Worker Cooperatives Act introduced into the State Assembly?! YES!

Worker-Owned Job Creation on the Rise: Assemblymember Bonta Introduces California’s First Limited Liability Worker Cooperative Act to Facilitate Worker-Owned Business Development

Bill introduced in the California State Assembly would eliminate cumbersome requirements of existing law so that local worker-owned and managed businesses can thrive.

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WORKER COOP STATUTE INTRODUCED INTO CA ASSEMBLY

BREAKING NEWS:Worker Cooperatives Act introduced into the State Assembly?! YES!

Worker-Owned Job Creation on the Rise: Assemblymember Bonta Introduces California’s First Limited Liability Worker Cooperative Act to Facilitate Worker-Owned Business Development

Bill introduced in the California State Assembly would eliminate cumbersome requirements of existing law so that local worker-owned and managed businesses can thrive.

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The Sharing Economy Just Got Real

Janelle OrsiThis article was originally published on Shareable

The legal problems of the sharing economy just got real. The latest lawsuits against "ride-sharing" companies Lyft and Über could be game changers. The plaintiffs are drivers who give rides to strangers for money, paying a portion of their earnings to the companies. The class action lawsuits argue that the drivers should be classified as employees of the companies. Regardless of the outcome, the lawsuits call attention to the potential harms arising from the non-sharing parts of the sharing economy. It’s a good opportunity to declare that the so-called “sharing economy” needs a new business model.

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The Sharing Economy Just Got Real (Shareable)

You can’t truly remedy today’s economic problems by using the same business structures that created the economic problems. Because of their current ownership structure, Airbnb, Lyft, Über, and TaskRabbit could be bought out by ever larger and more centralized companies that won’t necessarily care about the well-being of people using the services, or about the overall abundance of jobs in our economy...

There is only one way to ensure that a company will make decisions in the interests of the people it serves: Put those people in control of the company.

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How to Make Laws that Actually Work for the New Economy

Dispatches_JanelleOrsi-Homepage_1.png"The rules for the new economy haven't been written yet. Well, they have...it's just that they were written 50+ years ago when the 9-to-5, 30-years-and-a-gold-watch career path was the rule, not the exception. They haven't kept up with the changing economy or the new workforce."

Read the whole interview with Sara Horowitz of the Freelancer's Union

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How to Make Laws that Actually Work for the New Economy

An interview with SELC Executive Director Janelle Orsi on the laws and regulations laws guiding the new economy, and what needs to come next. 

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Cooperatives and Education

The Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC), Project Equity, and the Green Collar Communities Clinic (GC3) invited cooperative members, developers, and supporters to join us in a brainstorming discussion about ways to help Californians learn about cooperatives. The questions we used to prompt the discussion were:

  • How might K-12 schools, colleges, and graduate schools begin to incorporate education about cooperatives into their curricula?
  • What skills and knowledge should be included in a program to learn about cooperatives?
  • What policies might promote greater infusion of cooperative education into various levels of education?

We took notes (below) so we could share the insights that were brought forth during the discussion. We will integrate these and future ideas into the East Bay's very first Worker Cooperative Academy!

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The shareable city: building a better legal foundation for urban sustainability

An interview with SELC's City Policies Program Director, Yassi Eskandari, on the legal foundations of more sustainable cities.

 

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Does the Sharing Economy Need Lawyers?

By Bronwen Morgan, Post Growth Institute

Ordinary people, perhaps frustrated with the inertia of government policies and large-scale corporate routines and practices, are experimenting with different ways of moving around, powering themselves, securing food and making a living, with as little waste as possible. [...] Much more rarely explored is the question: what kind of legal and regulatory support structures will help such experimental initiatives to flourish? We think four things will matter most.

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Public Feedback Forums

The Worker Cooperative Policy Coalition held two public feedback forums to solicit feedback on the proposed provisions of the worker cooperative policy that will be (hopefully) going to the California legislature in February 2014. Below are the notes of the feedback forums, one held on December 2nd at the Sudo Room in Oakland and the other held on December 7th in San Francisco at the Main Public Library.

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The Sustainable Economies Law Center Files Reply Comments on PG&E and SDG&E's Revised Testimony

Overall, the Sustainable Economies Law Center advocates for a more in-depth community-based renewable energy proposal from both PG&E and SDG&E as well as clear guidelines for implementation.  In doing so, SELC defines true community-based renewable projects to include the following attributes:

  • (1) The majority of the project is owned by individual residents of the community or by a local organization or cooperative that is managed and controlled by individual residents of the community;
  • (2) The project's generating capacity does not exceed 1 MW and is located in or near the community; and
  • (3) The majority of the project's economic benefits are distributed locally.

 

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Sustainable Economies Law Center Files Reply Comments on the Revised Testimonies of PG&E and SDG&E

On December 20, 2013, the Sustainable Economies Law Center filed its Reply Comments in the CPUC proceeding.  The CPUC is reviewing how California's three investor-owned utilities propose to implement the newly enacted SB 43, which established a 600 MW distributed renewable energy pilot program.

Overall, SELC advocates for a more in-depth community-based renewable energy proposal from both PG&E and SDG&E as well as clear guidelines for implementation.  In doing so, SELC defines true community-based renewable energy projects to include the following attributes:
  • (1) The majority of the project is owned by individual residents of the community or by a local organization or cooperative that is managed and controlled by individual residents of the community;
  • (2) The project's generating capacity does not exceed 1 MW and is located in or near the community; and
  • (3) The majority of the project's economic benefits are distributed locally.
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Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC) Comments on Proposed Rules under Food Safety Modernization Act

As you may have heard, the FDA released proposed rules under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) earlier this year and the deadline to submit comments is this Friday, November 15. Many small-scale farmers, food processors and good food advocates have expressed concerns about how some of the language in the proposed rule is too vague and how some parts may be excessively burdensome on small food businesses.

Click here for a guide on how to submit comments produced by our friends at the Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF). Note: the website where you can submit comments online has been malfunctioning this week so don't wait until the last minute to submit your comments. If you aren't able to access the site, keep trying, or if you hurry, you can mail your comments in time for them to arrive this Friday (see instructions at the link above).

Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC) submitted the following comments:

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Sustainable Economies Law Center Intervenes in CA Proceeding for Shared Renewable Energy

SELC_Community_Renewable_Energy_img.jpg

On November 12, the Sustainable Economies Law Center became an official party to a proceeding at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). Our intention is to help implement Senate Bill (SB) 43, the Green Tariff Shared Renewables Program, which was signed into law last month.  SB 43 establishes a 600 MW pilot program – the largest distributed generation goal in the nation – and allows customers of California’s three investor-owned utilities (IOUs) to subscribe to a shared renewable energy facility in their service territory and receive a credit in their monthly utility bill.

THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS.

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Sustainable Economies Law Center Intervenes in CA Proceeding for Shared Renewable Energy

On November 12, the Sustainable Economies Law Center became an official party to a proceeding at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). Our intention is to help implement Senate Bill (SB) 43, the Green Tariff Shared Renewables Program, which was signed into law in October of 2013.  SB 43 establishes a 600 MW pilot program – the largest distributed generation goal in the nation – and allows customers of California’s three investor-owned utilities (IOUs) to subscribe to a shared renewable energy facility in their service territory and receive a credit in their monthly utility bill.

But the devil is in the details.

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