SACRAMENTO, Calif. – California legislators approved a landmark bill Tuesday that requires companies like Uber and Lyft to treat contract workers as employees, a move that could reshape the gig economy and adds fuel to a yearslong debate over whether the nature of work has become too insecure. But Uber pushed back on Wednesday. Tony West, Uber’s chief legal officer, said in a news conference that it would not treat its drivers, who are independent contractors, as employees under the California bill. He said that drivers were not a core part of Uber’s business and could maintain their independent status when the measure goes into effect as state law on Jan. 1. Uber’s business, West said, is not providing rides but “serving as a technology platform for several different types of digital marketplaces.” The bill will apply to app-based companies, despite their efforts to negotiate an exemption. On Wednesday morning, the Assembly gave its final approval, and California Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to sign it. Under the measure, workers must be designated as employees instead of contractors if a company exerts control over how they perform their tasks or if their work is part of a company’s regular business…. Read full this story
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