Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger upheld his tradition of rejecting "job-killer" bills by vetoing all six bills designated by the California Chamber of Commerce as such last week.

Schwarzenegger also signed into law a chamber-designated "job-creator" bill that will reinstate air quality permits for hundreds of construction projects in the L.A. region.

The six vetoes announced Oct. 11 continue Schwarzenegger's tradition of rejecting bills with the job-killer label; since he took office, he has vetoed 53 out of 57 such bills.

"Schwarzenegger understands that California business cannot withstand additional regulation at a time when we are struggling with economic recovery," said Allan Zaremberg, chief executive of the state chamber. "Allowing these job-killer bills to become law would have further hampered hiring and hurt our state's competitiveness."

The bills Schwarzenegger vetoed were:

- AB 2, which would have allowed lawsuits over health insurers' decisions to rescind coverage;

- AB 793, which would have broadened the ability of employees to sue for discrimination;

- AB 943, which would have restricted the ability of employers to use credit reports in hiring decisions;

- AB 1404, which would have limited the amount of pollution offsets that businesses could use to meet their greenhouse gas emission reduction goals;

- SB 242, which would have imposed penalties on employers who failed to post signs or otherwise communicate with customers in additional languages; and

- SB 789, which would have made it easier for farm workers to gain union representation. Schwarzenegger vetoed this bill in early September.

On the other side of the ledger, Schwarzenegger signed into law SB 827, which as of Jan. 1 reinstates permits that had been granted for hundreds of construction projects in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. The South Coast Air Quality Management District permits were frozen by a judge as the result of a lawsuit filed by environmental groups challenging the district's awarding of emission reduction credits at below-market costs.

(It was previously reported in this column that the Legislature sent seven job-killer bills to Schwarzenegger. But only six passed the Legislature; at the last minute, one bill was held in the Senate Appropriations Committee. It can be moved to the Senate floor for a vote at any time the Senate is in session.)

Workers' Comp Setbacks

Meanwhile, Schwarzenegger also signed into law two workers' compensation-related bills that had been opposed by employers. (Neither made the chamber's job-killer list.)


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