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Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Rivals Uber and Lyft have joined forces, a rare event, to oppose a California legislature bill that would make it harder for them to classify workers as independent contractors in their home state.

Driving the news: A bill that would codify last year's Dynamex decision by the state's Supreme Court passed California's Assembly (51-11) last month and will soon be in the hands of the state Senate. That decision set a new, higher bar for companies that want to pay service providers as contractors rather than employees — a practice that the ride-hailing services' businesses are built upon.

Background: The Dynamex decision was the result of a 2005 lawsuit brought against a courier and delivery company of that name by its drivers, which it started to classify as independent contractors in 2004.

  • The California Supreme Court's eventual decision set a new standard for how to classify workers known as the ABC test, under which all three requirements need to be met for a worker to be classified as an independent contractor.
  • The three requirements are that the company isn’t controlling how the work is done, the work is outside of the company’s main business, and that the worker is in business for themselves.

What it is: AB5, which California's Senate will soon get to consider, would not only codify Dynamex's more stringent requirements into the state's laws, but also go beyond its original scope of wages and also guarantee other benefits and protections.

What they're saying: In a joint op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle, the heads of Uber and Lyft argue that the flexibility of being independent contractors is crucial for their drivers. They also say they're prepared to provide drivers with additional benefits like paid time off, retirement planning, and education reimbursement, create a drivers' organization to speak on their behalf, andoffer a wage guarantee.

  • This idea shares some elements with the concept of "portable benefits" that has been proposed as a response to new workplace arrangements.

Yes, but: Critics say that the companies' proposals don't go far enough. AB5 sponsor Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) told the San Francisco Chronicle that they had previously suggested paying 2.5% of wages into a fund to cover benefits, far below the 6.2% of salaries contributed into Social Security alone.

Meanwhile: Assembly Republicans have sponsored a competing bill, AB71, that would roll back the Dynamex provisions. The bill is still being reviewed by an Assembly committee.

Go deeper: The on-demand economy is reshaping America's workforce

Go deeper

Acting Capitol Police chief: Phone logs show Jan. 6 National Guard approval was delayed

Pittman at a congressional tribute for fallen officer Brian Sicknick. Photo: Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images

Acting U.S. Capitol Police chief Yogananda Pittman testified on Thursday that cellphone records show former USCP chief Steven Sund requested National Guard support from the House sergeant-at-arms as early as 12:58pm on Jan. 6, but he did not receive approval until over an hour later.

Why it matters: Sund and former House sergeant-at-arms Paul Irving clashed at a Senate hearing on Tuesday over a dispute in the timeline for when Capitol Police requested the National Guard during the Capitol insurrection.

Manhattan prosecutors reportedly obtain millions of pages of Trump's tax records

Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Manhattan district attorney is now in possession of millions of pages of former President Trump's tax and financial records, CNN first reported, following a Supreme Court ruling that allowed prosecutors to enforce a subpoena after a lengthy legal battle.

Why it matters: Trump fought for years to keep his tax returns out of the public eye and away from prosecutors in New York, who are examining his business in a criminal investigation that was first sparked by hush-money payments made by Trump's former fixer Michael Cohen during the 2016 election.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

The digital dollar is now high priority for the Fed

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The U.S. is starting to get serious about a central-bank-backed digital currency, with recent comments from top officials laying out the strongest support yet.

Driving the news: On Tuesday Fed chair Jerome Powell told Congress that developing a digital dollar is a "high priority project for us," but added that there are "significant technical and policy questions."