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Tech industry likely to qualify initiative that would reverse gig economy crackdown

February 27, 2020
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By Jeremy B. White – Reporter, Politico

The tech industry appears likely to qualify a November initiative that would reverse the state’s gig economy crackdown, with the campaign saying today it has collected more than a million signatures.

That’s far more than the 623,212 signatures needed to qualify a ballot initiative, and that buffer of hundreds of thousands of superfluous signatures would likely be enough to compensate for a certain amount being tossed as invalid.

The new employment law compels businesses to treat many more workers as employees, rather than independent contractors — an existential threat to gig work companies whose app-dispatched drivers and delivery people are currently classified as contractors.

Five of those companies have kicked in a cumulative $110 million to pass a ballot initiative that would prevent those workers from being re-classified as employees. Organized labor, which championed CA AB5 (19R), has vowed to defend the law at the ballot box.