Policy Advocacy, Reports, & Recommendations
We develop innovative policy recommendations and spearhead legislative campaigns that enable more localized, just, and resilient economies. Ready to be a Policymaker in Your City or State?
We want to empower you to make policy! To create economically resilient communities, we need to change or create countless local, regional, state, and federal laws. These new laws would remove barriers to and create incentives for local food production, renewable energy projects, local industry, worker-owned enterprises, shared housing, and other aspects of thriving communities.
Local Worker Cooperative Ordinances
Homes for Communities Not Corporations
Policy Reports and Recommendations
Check out our policy reports below and/or read about our transformative policymakers program here.
In the midst of a pandemic and transformative moment for civil rights in this country, the Worker-Owned Recovery California (WORC) Coalition raced against the clock to intervene in California's state budget bill. The Law Center is a member of this coalition, and our Policy Director, Yassi Eskandari, is its coordinator. WORC's goal for this campaign was to ensure that worker-owned businesses were included in California's economic recovery efforts and, to that end, WORC advocated for $10M to fund education, technical assistance, and forgivable loans to businesses that transition to worker ownership.
This budget request was submitted for the June 15, 2020 budget with the backing of State Assemblymembers Chu, Kalra, Gonzalez, Limón, Bloom, Bonta, and Chiu, in order preserve the economic backbone of our state, reward both workers and selling business owners, and set California on the path to a more equitable economy.
Considering all the legal drama that is happening in California with Uber and Lyft around worker classification, here's a reminder of how things could be if those ridesharing giants were cooperatives instead.
"Instead of optimizing the online economy for growth and short-term profits for the few," the emerging Platform Cooperative movement is trying to build a more sustainable and equitable business model for the 21st century.
Learn more in this case study of Arcade City in Austin, Texas, written by our Transportation Researcher Adam Stocker and our Cooperatives Attorney Sara Stephens.
Short-term residential rentals, like those facilitated by online platforms like Airbnb, Homeaway, and Flipkey, have become a popular alternative to traditional hotels.
Increased short-term rental (STR) activity has exacerbated many municipal issues, including neighborhood quality; access, availability, and cost of housing; and decreased public revenues. Short-term rentals can also provide some benefits, including creating opportunities for income generation; diversifying travel options; and spreading tourism dollars to local residents and businesses.
Our recommendations for equitable short-term rental regulation balance the potential benefits of STRs with the need to protect public interests.
Worker cooperatives create quality jobs, grow local wealth, and promote economic resilience. Local governments can be instrumental in fostering the development of worker cooperatives by removing several key barriers and providing essential technical, strategic, and financial support.
We've drafted a worker cooperative development policy tailored to the city of Oakland, California, a perfect example of a city that could benefit from a thriving cooperative economy and everything that comes with it.
The ordinance can be easily tailored to fit the needs of any U.S. city, and we welcome inquiries from cities wishing to adopt a similar policy.
Policies for Shareable Cities is the first policy handbook of its kind.
It includes over 30 recommended policies for how cities should regulate the true sharing economy in the areas of food, work, housing, and transportation.
More on the Law Center's Advocacy in California
- 2020: We support a state California State Public Bank bill (AB 310) that would create a State Public Bank that can leverage its capital to build a just and equitable post-COVID economy. Read more about the bill here.
- The Law Center supports a California bill to establish the Nutrition Incentives Matching Grants Program (AB 1321) to create incentives for recipients of nutrition assistance programs (eg CalFRESH, food stamps) to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts at California farmers' markets and small retailers. Read more about it here.
- Sustainable Economies Law Center opposes bill to ban right of local government to tax short term rentals (AB 1220). Read our opposition letter here.
SELC Policy Director and Staff Attorney, Yassi Eskandari: yassi [at] theselc.org