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How the FAST Act got squashed

Restaurant industry leaders got together this past week to push the legislation to a vote


The California FAST Act — the controversial legislation passed by the state in Sept. that would create a council to regulate the fast-food industry — has been put on hold for now. The Small Restaurant Coalition, led by the National Restaurant Association, received more than a million signatures –enough to send the legislation to a referendum vote, which will take place in Nov. 2024.

The FAST Recovery Act or Assembly Bill 257, was signed into law by California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Labor Day and was designed to give fast-food employees a seat at the table. The Governor would be in charge of creating a 10-person council that would set standard wages, working hours and conditions for employees of quick-service chains with 100 or more locations nationally.

That council would have the ability to raise the minimum wage for workers to $22 an hour. And although the council’s jurisdiction would technically only extend to the quick-service restaurant industry, according to a previous interview we did with Riley Lagesen, an attorney at Greenberg Traurig, the competitive market would ensure that nearly every industry statewide adjusts their wages accordingly. It would also be highly likely that the legislation would be copied in other industries and across other cities and states.

Hear more from senior editor Joanna Fantozzi.


TAGS: Workforce
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