Governor Brown Signs SB 54 to Improve Safety at Refineries

October 14, 2013 - Governor Jerry Brown has signed Senate Bill 54, to improve safety at refineries by ensuring that skilled workers who have graduated from a state approved apprenticeship program perform a high percentage of the complex and dangerous work at chemical manufacturing facilities.

SBCTC President Robbie Hunter commented: “This bill will not only improve safety at refineries, for workers, the working class communities in which these facilities are located, and the environment, but will vastly increase opportunities for California building trades workers and our contractors. It also will increase the opportunity for California youth in these same neighborhoods to enter building trades’ apprenticeships.”

SB 54 by Senator Loni Hancock, D-Berkeley, will improve worker safety and public safety by requiring a “skilled and trained” workforce at refineries and high-hazard chemical manufacturing and processing facilities. Starting in 2014, SB 54 will eventually lead to 60 percent of workers employed by contractors at these facilities required to be journeypersons who have graduated from a state-approved apprenticeship program. This bill has the ability to put tens of thousands of California building trades workers to work, and will bring to an end the practice of refineries importing workers from Texas and other states.

Attached is a comment by the ABC on SB 54. We believe it is true, and we encourage all affiliated trades to take this opportunity to unionize non-union contractors that are now working in the refineries.

Congratulations and thanks to all the local Building Trades councils, district councils, union locals, and international presidents, as well as the national Building and Construction Trades department, and working men and women who made their voices heard, and helped SB 54 pass through the Legislature and receive the Governor’s signature.

 

 

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