This is the third of a three-part series on statewide propositions on the general election ballot. Click here to read the other parts as well as more election stories.
Proposition 7: Daylight saving time
This proposition will neither make permanent nor abolish daylight saving time. A yes vote would authorize the state Legislature to make that decision. Because a voter-approved proposition established daylight saving time in California in 1949, a voter-approved proposition is necessary to repeal it. If approved, Prop. 7 would give the state Legislature the authority to decide whether daylight saving time should be made year-round in California, which would require a two-thirds vote in the Legislature as well as federal approval by Congress.
Proposition 8: Limiting dialysis clinic revenue
If passed, Prop. 8 would cap how much outpatient kidney dialysis clinics can charge patients and would impose penalties for excessive bills. The initiative would also require dialysis clinics to give refunds to patients or patients’ payers for any profits exceeding that cap — 15 percent of the cost of direct patient care and qualifying business costs. The proposition would require clinics to report the costs, revenue and charges for dialysis treatment annually to the state. The measure would also prohibit clinics from discriminating against patients based on their method of payment — that is, Medi-Cal and Medicare patients.
The funding for support of and opposition to Prop. 8 has shaped up as a contest between labor unions, SEIU-United Health Care Workers in particular, and two large corporations, DaVita and Fresenius Medical Care. These two firms own about 75 percent of the dialysis clinics in California, with the balance owned by nonprofit medical organizations.
Supporters: California Democratic Party, Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 617
Opponents: California Republican Party, Fresenius Medical Care, DaVita, California Medical Association, National Kidney Foundation
Proposition 11: Requiring ambulance employees to be on call during breaks
If passed, the measure would exempt ambulance drivers, paramedics and emergency medical technicians from state labor laws that require most workers to be off duty for lunch breaks and rest periods. Instead, it would require workers at for-profit medical response companies to be on call during all meal and rest breaks. Workers would be paid at their regular rate during these breaks, but interrupted breaks could not be counted toward total required break time per shift.
According to the independent state Legislative Analyst’s Office, private ambulance companies including AMR, which provide about three-fourths of the emergency trips in the state, could see their labor costs increase by as much as $100 million if lunch-break labor laws were to be applied to the medical transport industry. A yes vote on Prop. 11 would prevent that possibility. The initiative also includes a provision that would void all pending class-action lawsuits against the ambulance companies for violations of the labor code.
Supporters: American Medical Response, California Republican Party, Sacramento Bee editorial board, Bakersfield Californian editorial board
Opponents: United EMS Workers, California Democratic Party, California Teachers Association, California Labor Federation, Service Employees International Union, United Steelworkers (which represents a branch of emergency service workers in Northern California)
Proposition 12: Increasing requirements for farm animal confinement
A yes vote would ban the sale of meat from certain farm animals confined in less space than specified in the measure. California passed a similar measure, Prop. 2, in 2008 that banned the sale of meat and certain animal products if the animals were confined in spaces in which the animals were unable to turn around, lie down, stand up and fully extend their limbs — but Prop. 2 did not specify the specific square footage required nor include any funding for enforcement.
Supporters: Humane Society of the United States, Mercy for Animals, Central Valley Eggs, American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, California Democratic Party, United Farm Workers
Opponents: California Republican Party, California Pork Producers Association, Association of California Egg Farmers, Humane Farming Association, Friends of Animals, California Farm Bureau, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Sacramento Bee editorial board