California’s ‘Fair Market Value Bill’ Clears First Hurdle

4/09/2008 10:02 AM Eastern

A bill that would prevent content producers from selling programs at lower-than-market value to corporate siblings has passed its first committee vote in the California Senate.

On April 8, the state Senate Judiciary Committee approved the SB1765, the “Fair Market Value Bill.” The bill, introduced by former actress and current state Sen. Sheila Kuehl (D-Los Angeles), is supported by unions including the Teamsters and the Writers Guild of America West.

The unions assert that when programming is sold from one corporate sibling to another, at advantageous prices, it hurts workers whose residual compensation is tied to the sale price.

“Our members, who are truck drivers, animal trainers, location managers and casting directors in the film and television industry, depend on residual payments for their health and welfare benefits,” Barry Broad, legislative director of the California Teamsters Public Affairs Council, said in a statement.

“If games are being played to avoid paying these hard-working men and women their fair share, then the time has come for the Legislature to pass a law that will respect workers in the entertainment industry from such unfair conduct,” he added.

The bill is headed to the full Senate for consideration.