Five key employment law deadlines and developments for California employers for July 2022

There has been a lot going on on the California employment law frontlines for the past two weeks, and California employers need to stay alert to new employment law developments this summer. As we enter the second half of 2022, here are five things California employers need to be aware of:

1. The IRS mileage rate will increase to 62.5 cents per mile on July 1, 2022.

On June 9, 2022, the IRS announced that it would be increasing the mileage rate effective July 1, 2022. The IRS mileage rate will increase from 58.5 cents per mile to 62.5 cents per mile from July 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022.

As gas prices continue to rise to historic highs, employers with employees who drive for work need to ensure their mileage reimbursement policies are up to date. For more information on California employers’ obligation to pay for mileage reimbursement and the landmark California Supreme Court decision on the matter, Gattuso v. Harte-Hanks Shoppers, Inc., see our previous post here.

2. Registration deadline for CalSavers Small Employers is June 30, 2022.

California employers are required to enroll in the CalSavers Retirement Savings Program. Employers with 5 or more employees must register for the program by June 30, 2022. Employers with more than 100 employees had to register by September 30, 2020, employers with more than 50 employees had to register by June 30, 2021 and began issuing subpoenas starting at $250 per employee and increasing to $500 per employee can rise.

3. Many local minimum wage increases effective July 1, 2022.

As we have previously written here, many local cities and counties across California will increase their minimum wages on July 1, 2022. Employers must review their jurisdiction to ensure compliance with the applicable minimum wage.

In addition, the City of West Hollywood is also increasing the amount of paid leave payable to employees. The city’s website states: “Effective July 1, 2022, full-time employees of all businesses must be provided with at least 96 paid hours and 80 unpaid hours per year for sickness, vacation, or personal needs. Part-time workers should be given paid and unpaid hours in proportion to those working 40 hours a week.” For more information on minimum wage and paid vacations in West Hollywood, visit the city’s website here.

4. Effective July 1, 2022, Responsible Beverage Service (RBS) training is required for alcohol dispensers.

The RBS training “teaches servers to responsibly serve alcoholic beverages for on-site consumption and mitigate alcohol-related harm in California communities.” Alcoholic Beverage Control mandates that beginning July 1, 2022, each ABC licensee holding an “ABC On-Premises License” must ensure that designated employees (alcohol servers and managers of alcohol servers) have a Received training through an ABC-approved RBS training provider within 60 days of employment. This includes employees who were employed prior to July 1, 2022. For more information, visit the ABC website here.

5. Bill proposed creating a council to regulate California “fast food restaurants,” which will be continued in the California Legislature.

AB257, referred to as the Fast Food Accountability and Standards Recovery Act or FAST Recovery Act, proposes establishing a Fast Food Sector Council within the Department of Labor Relations and makes its way through California Legislature. If passed, the law would create a council composed of 11 members appointed by the governor. The council would define which fast-food restaurants it would regulate and set standards for minimum wages, hours of work and “other working conditions related to the health, safety and welfare” of fast-food establishments. In addition, the bill also creates joint liability for franchisors and a private right of action for employees to seek discrimination or retaliation.

In addition, the bill defines “fast food chain” in the draft as “a set of restaurants consisting of 30 or more establishments across the country that share a common brand or are distinguished by standardized options for decoration, marketing, packaging, Label products and services.” The bill would add another layer of complexity to these restaurants on top of the existing Labor Code and is a proposed law that restaurant operators of all stripes should watch closely this summer.

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