California’s Immigrant Worker Protection Act (AB 450) provides California workers with protection from immigration enforcement while on the job. This law applies to all California employers and was effective January 1, 2018.
One of the requirements of this new law is that employers must provide notice to all current employees when a federal immigration agency intends to inspect the employer’s Forms I-9 or other employment records.
Required Notice to Employees
If an employer receives a Notice of Inspection from a federal immigration agency, the employer must post a required notice to employees in the workplace within 72 hours of receiving the Notice of Inspection.
The Labor Commissioner released an official notice for employers to use. The Notice to Employee (Labor Code section 90.2) is available in English and Spanish.
The notice must be posted in the language normally used to communicate with employees. A copy of the Notice of Inspection and any accompanying documents must be posted along with the required notice.
In addition to posting the notice in the workplace, employers must give the notice to the employees’ collective bargaining representative(s), if any.
Additional Notice Requirements
Employers also have notice obligations once the inspection is over. Within 72 hours of receiving the inspection results, employers must give each “affected employee” a copy of the results and a written notice of the employer’s and employee’s obligations arising from the inspection.
An “affected employee” is one identified by the inspection results as potentially lacking work authorization or having document deficiencies. There is not a template for this notice; it must be specific to the affected employee.
Preparation Is Essential
Employers only have 72 hours from the time they receive a Notice of Inspection to generate and post the required notice to employees, and only 72 hours from receipt of the inspection results to notify affected employees. Employers who violate the notice requirements can face penalties of up to $10,000 per violation, depending on whether it’s a first or subsequent offense.
Because the timeframes are so short, preparation is key to meeting the notice requirements. Employers should have a process in place to respond to Notices of Inspection. Employers should identify who in their organization would likely receive a Notice of Inspection and confirm that person knows how to respond.
CalChamber added the new Notice to Employee English and Spanish versions to the HRCalifornia website. These forms are available for free.
CalChamber members can learn more about Worksite Immigration Enforcement and Protectionsin the HR Library. Not a member? Learn about the benefits of membership.
Opportunity knocks only once a year to honor the people and businesses that make Oxnard an outstanding community. Nominations for the 2018 Business & Community Awards are now open. The deadline is March 23, so get those nominations together now. We all know people who have contributed to the Oxnard community, so why not honor them?
The 2018 award categories are:
Distinguished Citizen of the Year
Man of the Year
Woman of the Year
Small Business of the Year
Large Business of the Year
Downtown Business of the Year
Innovative Business of the Year
Service Organization of the Year
Being nominated for one of these prestigious awards is quite an honor. To nominate an individual, business or organization, complete and submit the nomination form by March 23.
Sponsorship opportunities are available! Click here for details. Allow your organization to gain visibility and recognition by supporting the honoring of Oxnard’s worthiest businesses and citizens. One of the fantastic perks of sponsoring this event is inclusion on the award selection committee.
The 68th Annual Community & Business Awards will be held Friday, April 27, 2018 at 11:30am at Levity Live at the Collection. Reservations are required in advance and are $50 per person. Visit www.oxnardchamber.com or call the Chamber to register or become an event sponsor.
As we all know, the President signed the sweeping tax reform bill ushering in a broad range of changes including new rules for income tax rates and deductions, college for savings incentives, estate planning and corporate taxes. These new rules are leaving folks scratching their heads and scrambling to find out what the most sweeping tax reform package in decades means and what actions to consider.
In my last article I wrote about the importance of passing on some of the benefits to increase employees’ salaries and 401K’s so I’ll continue in this article by saying that retirement savings incentives apparently will be unaffected. To get a clear understanding, everyone should consult with tax professionals to evaluate their personal circumstances and money management but financial advisers say the new rules do not call for changes to existing retirement savings incentives, preserving the favorable tax treatment and contribution limits to 401 (k)s and other retirement savings accounts.
Below are some key takeaways from tax reform bill:
Temporary increase in federal estate tax exemption
The law will roughly double the federal estate tax exemption to $11 million per person ($22 million per couple). That limit will be indexed to inflation, but would expire and revert back to current law after 2025.
Beneficiaries will still get a step up in basis, meaning there would be no capital gains tax due on inherited assets at the time of the transfer, and the cost basis - the value used to compute tax liability - would be reset to the price at that date.
It is important to note that state level estate tax exemptions are often much lower than the federal level and are unaffected by this law. In addition, the temporary nature of the higher limit means that if you have an estate plan, you should proceed carefully before making any changes.
While a further increase in the estate tax exemption will help some families avoid this tax at the federal level, it remains important for all households to have a current estate plan that helps ensure their wishes are carried out and reduces the cost of transferring assets as part of an estate.
New corporate tax rate and pass-through tax rate
Corporate tax rates will be cut to 21% beginning in this year. That tax cut is not scheduled to expire.
Pass-through businesses, businesses structured as sole proprietorships, partnerships, and S-corporations, will be taxed at individual tax rates, but will be able to deduct 20% of income. To prevent high-income individuals from taking advantage of this deduction, it would only be available to couples filing jointly with incomes below $315,000. For income above that level, the rules are complex but it appears that certain kinds of businesses might still be eligible for a partial deduction.
The plan would let businesses fully expense new equipment right away, but the provision would eventually expire.
The bottom line
There are a few things you may want to consider in light of the new legislation, and may want to consult with a tax professional about, so you can be prepared.
• Rethink your mortgages and deductions: If you have traditionally made charitable gifts or benefited from the mortgage interest or state and local tax deduction, you want to look at how the new standard deduction will impact you. If it no longer makes sense to deduct these expenses, you may want to rethink your mortgage or giving strategy. The imposition of a cap on state and local tax deductions may also impact where some people choose to live in retirement.
• Estate tax: Even in the absence of tax reform, it makes sense to periodically review your estate plan. If the estate tax limit changes are relevant to your plan, it may make even more sense to revisit your strategy. You may want to meet with your estate planning attorney.
• Small-business income: If you own a small business, you may want to reconsider how you structure your income and the form of your enterprise. Depending on the size and particulars of your business, you may want to consider the benefits of incorporation or the restructuring of pass-through organizations. Consult with an expert in small-business taxation.
• Timing corporate expenses: With new rules in place temporarily for expensing capital equipment purchases, business owners may want to review their capital expenditure plans.
I trust the Oxnard business community will find this information useful.
Gabriel's House: Providing faith-based healing and wholeness to the formerly homeless women and children of Oxnard
Gabriel’s House is a non-profit emergency shelter and transitional living home located in Oxnard dedicated to serving the formerly homeless women and their children of Ventura County. Since opening in 2011, Gabriel's House has provided emergency shelter and case management services to over 400 residents with over 300 (75%) of these residents moving into stable or long-term housing programs. With 20 emergency service beds and six private family rooms, Gabriel’s House can serve up to 40 women, children, and babies at one time.
The City of Oxnard has recently chosen Gabriel’s House to be the site of Ventura County’s newest, expanded emergency shelter. This new multi-story unit, located immediately next to Gabriel’s House in Oxnard, will double or triple Gabriel’s House’s existing emergency shelter capacity. The cry and vision of Gabriel’s House is that no woman or child in our community should have to sleep outside.
Gabriel’s House is more than a comfortably furnished home on two green acres in a quiet neighborhood with security. It is an entire community of caregivers committed to serving each individual as a person, not as a case. It is a place to call home and truly be part of a family. You can learn more about Gabriel’s House at gabriel's-house.org. Requests to learn more or to get involved with Gabriel’s House can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (805) 487-3445.
State agencies must take seriously the requirement to conduct a timely, accurate economic analysis of major regulations, according to a just-released opinion by the 5th District Court of Appeal.
In a unanimous opinion upholding the trial court, the appellate justices found that the final economic impact analysis used in rulemaking must be based on evidence, as must the responses to public comments regarding nonspeculative economic impacts which introduce new evidence into the rulemaking file.
The California Chamber of Commerce filed a friend-of-the-court brief in the case.
The court also ruled that a state agency must address both intrastate and interstate economic competitiveness impacts and concerns.
In deciding this case, the appellate court rejected the application of a deferential standard of review to the state agency’s interpretation of its obligations under the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). In effect, the court held that the agency doesn’t get to decide for itself what the Legislature meant by holding the agency accountable.
The APA ruling in this dispute, John R. Lawson Rock & Oil, Inc. and California Trucking Association v. State Air Resources Board et al., Case No. F074003, centered around the adequacy of the economic analysis conducted by the Air Resources Board (ARB) when it adopted an amendment to a rule regulating diesel truck engines.
The California Trucking Association successfully argued that the analysis was a “rosy scenario without merit,” and that the economic analysis “merely evaluated the Amendments’ ‘benefits,’ and did not include any analysis of the Amendments’ potential ‘adverse economic impact[s]’ on affected businesses.”
The appellate court found that behavior unacceptable.
The court also rejected the agency’s willful ignorance of evidence of additional economic impacts, developed through the APA’s iterative regulatory analysis and review process.
That is, once an agency is made aware of relevant economic information—especially potentially adverse economic impacts—then it must address those impacts in good faith as it completes its final economic analysis.
The requirement that agencies conduct rigorous economic impact analyses was enacted by the Legislature in 2011 (SB 617; R. Calderon; D-Montebello). The CalChamber was a key supporter of the legislation and has worked closely with the Department of Finance to develop the rules by which agencies must comply with these requirements.
Joining the CalChamber in filing the amicus curiae brief in this case were the California Manufacturers and Technology Association, California Business Properties Association, California Retailers Association, Consumer Specialty Products Association, California Independent Oil Marketers Association, Automotive Specialty Products Alliance, National Elevator Industry and Pacific Merchant Shipping Association.