Assemb. Obernolte’s Bill To Protect Small Businesses From Penalties Passes Committee

Sacramento, CA – Assemblyman Jay Obernolte’s (R-Hesperia) bill to allow state agencies discretion when enforcing monetary penalties for regulatory infractions on small businesses passed out of the Jobs, Economic Development, and the Economy Committee this week.

“Over-regulation and excessive fines are forcing many California entrepreneurs out of business,” Assemblyman Obernolte said. “My bill will give state agencies the discretion to waive fines for first-time violations if the mistake was inadvertent and the business owner is cooperating. For minor regulatory infractions, we should be working with owners to ensure that these businesses can keep their doors open and provide much-needed jobs to our communities.”

Assembly Bill 1545 will permit state agencies to help small businesses comply with state regulations. It will require state agencies to develop policies that allow for a reduction of penalties under certain circumstances. Discretion may be given in cases where the small business is a first-time offender, the small business takes action to correct the violation, and the small business is unable to pay the fine and might close because the penalty is too severe.

AB 1545 will next be heard in the Accountability and Administrative Review Committee.

Assemblyman Jay Obernolte represents the 33rd Assembly District, which includes the San Bernardino County communities of Adelanto, Apple Valley, Baker, Barstow, Big Bear City, Big Bear Lake, Big River, Crestline, Fort Irwin, Hesperia, Johnson Valley, Lake Arrowhead, Lenwood, Lucerne Valley, Needles, Oak Hills, Phelan, Running Springs, Silver Lakes, Trona, Twentynine Palms Base, Twin Peaks and Victorville.

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