What is a ‘Job Killer’?

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Donald Cohen, a longtime research and voice on California government, has a provocative piece in today's LA Times taking issue with organized business' claims that all sorts of progressive legislation are "job killers." He points out that many pieces of legislation that have been labeled as such produced no demonstrated economic setback.

Cohen's argument, at least as presented in the piece, is mostly anecdotal. But he has a point. Regulations that increase the cost of hiring and retaining employees are a problem. But much of what is labeled as a "job killer" doesn't impose such costs -- or imposes other benefits that mitigate costs.

It will be interesting to see if Cohen's arguments influence the annual debate during bill-signing season in the late summer, when Gov. Jerry Brown will consider legislation approved by the Assembly and Senate -- and face business claims that certain bills are job killers.

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