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Damien M. Schiff

Senior Attorney

Currently a Senior Attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation, Damien joined PLF in 2005.  His practice has focused on federal and state environmental and land-use issues.  Damien was counsel of record … ›

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By Damien M. Schiff

California Supreme Court upholds compulsory arbitration for agriculture

The California Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of California’s “mandatory mediation and conciliation” process for labor disputes between agricultural employers and unions.

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By Wen Fa

What does the Bill of Attainder Clause say about newfangled punishments?

Three years ago, California businesses faced crippling liability in the wake of court decisions interpreting the state’s minimum wage laws This year, the state legislature enacted Assembly Bill 1513, which allows businesses to avoid statutory liability if they promptly paid back wages in accordance with those decisions Yet, to secure the support of a powerful union, the legislature crafted carve-outs to prevent two businesses — Fowler Packing and Gerawan Farming — from taking advantage of this law

The carve-outs violate the Bill of Attainder Clause, which prohibits legislatures from singling out individuals for punishment Today Pacific Legal Foundation filed this friend-of-the-court brief, which asks the Ninth Circuit to restore

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By Damien M. Schiff

Fighting back against wrong-headed arbitration

Earlier this week, a variety of Central Valley papers picked up an oped written by former PLF Vice President David Stirling and me explaining the importance to California’s employers and employees of Gerawan Farming v Agricultural Labor Relations Board, a case currently pending in the California Supreme Court  The litigation focuses on California’s euphemistically (and oxymoronically) monikered “Mandatory Mediation and Conciliation Process”—effectively, a binding interest arbitration regime  According to this regime, if an agricultural employer cannot come to a mutually agreeable employment contract with its employees’ union, the state will force that employer into a “mediation session,” led by a private arbitrator, who is given the power to impose

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