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In weak economy, business lobby flexes its muscles in state legislature

By Laurel Rosenhall and Chase Davis, California Watch

Business interests were the top bill-killers inside California’s Capitol during Gov. Jerry Brown’s first year back in office, as concerns about the state’s weak economy cut into labor’s newfound clout.

Legislative data show business interests wielded strong influence, despite a Capitol dominated by Democrats in the Legislature and governor’s office. Business lobbyists defeated bills that would have cut back various tax breaks, required employers to give workers unpaid bereavement leave and prolonged the foreclosure process.

In the current economy, "all legislators are more sensitive to the argument that something would be a job killer or harmful for investment or expansion," said Dorothy Rothrock, a lobbyist for the California Manufacturers and Technology Association, which represents major businesses around the state. "That’s made it easier for us to stop or amend bills to make them less hostile or burdensome."

Read the complete story at California Watch.