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AB-680 Workers’ compensation: studies.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 02/15/2017 02:00 PM
AB680:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 680


Introduced by Assembly Member McCarty

February 15, 2017


An act to amend Section 77 of the Labor Code, relating to workers’ compensation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 680, as introduced, McCarty. Workers’ compensation: studies.
Existing law establishes a workers’ compensation system, administered by the Administrative Director of the Division of Workers’ Compensation, to compensate an employee for injuries sustained in the course of his or her employment. Existing law authorizes the commission to conduct a continuing examination of the workers’ compensation system. Existing law authorizes the commission to conduct or contract for studies it deems necessary to carry out its responsibilities.
This bill would prohibit a study that is conducted or contracted for by the commission from being funded or commenced prior to a public hearing on the purpose and design of the study, the sources from which the required data will be obtained, and the proposed researcher or entity. The bill would require a majority vote of the commission to approve the study and the researcher or entity selected to perform the study. The bill would prohibit payment for a study if those requirements are not complied with.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 77 of the Labor Code is amended to read:

77.
 (a) The commission shall conduct a continuing examination of the workers’ compensation system, as defined in Section 4 of Article XIV of the California Constitution, and of the state’s activities to prevent industrial injuries and occupational diseases. The commission may conduct or contract for studies it deems necessary to carry out its responsibilities. In carrying out its duties, the commission shall examine other states’ workers’ compensation programs and activities to prevent industrial injuries and occupational diseases. All state departments and agencies, and any rating organization licensed by the Insurance Commissioner pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 11750) of Chapter 3 of Part 3 of Division 2 of the Insurance Code, shall cooperate with the commission and upon reasonable request provide information and data in their possession that the commission deems necessary for the purpose of carrying out its responsibilities. The commission shall issue an annual report on the state of the workers’ compensation system, including recommendations for administrative or legislative modifications which would improve the operation of the system. The report shall be made available to the Governor, the Legislature, and the public on request.

(b)On or before July 1, 2003, and periodically thereafter as it deems necessary, the commission shall issue a report and recommendations on the improvement and simplification of the notices required to be provided by insurers and self-insured employers.

(b) A study conducted or contracted for by the commission shall not be funded or commenced prior to a public hearing on the purpose and design of the study, the sources from which the required data will be obtained, and the proposed researcher or entity to perform the study, and a public vote by a majority of the commission at a regularly scheduled meeting to approve the study and the researcher or entity selected to perform the study.
(c) A researcher or entity conducting or contracted to perform a study for the commission shall not receive payment for the study if the requirements of subdivision (b) are not complied with. This subdivision shall only apply to contracts entered into on or after January 1, 2018.

(c)

(d) The commission succeeds to, and is vested with, all of the powers, duties, purposes, responsibilities, and jurisdiction of the Health and Safety Commission which is hereby abolished, including the administration of grants to assist in establishing effective occupational injury and illness prevention programs.