California Assembly Bill 5, which includes a travel agent
exemption to stricter rules for independent contractors, passed a concurrence
vote in the California Assembly on Wednesday after passage in the state Senate
The bill now goes to the desk of Gov. Gavin Newsome.
The governor indicated in an opinion piece
in the Sacramento Bee that he will sign
the bill into law. ASTA and the California Coalition of Travel Organizations,
which lobbied for the inclusion of an exemption for travel advisors, said
Newsome has until mid-October to make his decision.
The bill codifies a California Supreme Court decision to
change the way workers are classified as independent contractors (ICs). The new
requirement that ICs perform work outside the hiring entity's usual course of
business would have been problematic. Without the exemption, agencies likely
wouldn't have been able to use ICs anymore.
But ASTA and the California Coalition of Travel Advisors
were successful in securing an exemption
for sellers of travel who maintain a business location separate from the travel
Last week, ASTA president and CEO Zane Kerby called securing
the exemption "by far the biggest legislative challenge we have faced in