Senators refuse bill allowing state to use volunteers

Members of the State Senate Labor Committee killed a bill sponsored by local Sen. Roy Ashburn. The law would have allowed volunteers to work for free on state projects.
Members of the State Senate Labor Committee killed a bill sponsored by local Sen. Roy Ashburn. The law would have allowed volunteers to work for free on state projects. A law in place already allows that, but is set to expire next year.

Ashburn's office said that the bill was killed in a party-line vote. Two Republicans voted for the bill and three Democrats voted against it.

"I'm terribly disappointed in this show of partisan pettiness on an issue as important as this," Ashburn said.

The measure had received widespread support from conservation groups and newspapers.

Opponents felt volunteers would take the jobs of paid workers.

Ashburn disagreed. "California's hardworking and well-meaning volunteers are not a threat to anyone's job anywhere in the state,'' he said. "The past four years under the previous bill have shown that to be true.''
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