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    Two Visions of America by Don Jans

    SB 525 Will Hurt Ventura County’s Medical System

    The Ventura County Taxpayers Association opposes Senate Bill 525. While we understand the intention to address the needs of healthcare workers, we believe that this bill could have negative consequences for both taxpayers and the healthcare industry.

    One of our primary concerns is the significant increase in minimum wage for health care workers as outlined in the bill. We value the dedication and hard work of health care professionals, yet this sudden and substantial increase in minimum wage could lead to unintended consequences. Small- and medium-sized health care facilities, which already face challenges in maintaining their operations, may struggle to accommodate this sudden financial burden. These facilities play a crucial role in providing healthcare services to communities. Imposing such a substantial wage increase could potentially lead to closures, reduced services, or increased healthcare costs for patients.

    Furthermore, while the bill acknowledges the importance of higher wages for retaining an experienced workforce, we believe that a one-size-fits-all approach may not be suitable for the diverse range of healthcare facilities and workers. Different facilities have varying financial capabilities and operational structures, and imposing a fixed wage increase might not be sustainable for all.

    Additionally, the bill’s provisions regarding exemptions and enforcement raise concerns about administrative complexities and potential legal disputes. Determining whether an employee qualifies for exemption based on a salary basis equivalent to 150% of the healthcare worker minimum wage may create confusion and potentially lead to disputes between employers and employees, further burdening the already complex healthcare industry regulations.

    We also question the appropriateness of using a legislative measure to address wage concerns within a specific industry. While it’s important to ensure fair compensation, mandating a significant increase in wages through legislation might not be the most effective approach. Such decisions should be considered within a broader context, considering economic conditions, the competitive landscape, and potential impacts on various stakeholders.

    In conclusion, while we acknowledge the good intentions behind Senate Bill 525, we believe that the bill’s approach to addressing wage concerns for healthcare workers could have unintended negative consequences. We urge the Legislature to consider alternative approaches that consider the diverse nature of healthcare facilities and workers, and that foster a balanced and sustainable solution for both healthcare providers and taxpayers.

    How to get involved?

    SB 525 is currently being heard in the Assembly Appropriations Committee. If it passes through this committee, the next step for the bill is the assembly floor, so currently we are encouraging individuals and organizations to reach out to their local assemblymember to voice their opposition to the bill.


    Steve Bennett, Jacqui Irwin, and Jesse Gabriel and let them know that SB 525 is not right for Ventura County.

    About the Ventura County Taxpayers Association (VCTA)

    Formed in 1954, The Ventura County Taxpayers Association is a 501(c)4 nonprofit organization dedicated to a non-partisan, fact-finding mission, emphasizing issues that affect Ventura County. We inform taxpayers, promote the wise use of public funds, oppose waste, advise public officials regarding issues of concern to taxpayers and recommend positions that will best serve the taxpayers’ interests. Our number one goal is to promote the wise use of public money and to oppose waste. 

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