BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  SB 1049
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   June 20, 2001

            ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC EMPLOYEES, RETIREMENT AND SOCIAL  
                                      SECURITY
                                 Sally Havice, Chair
                     SB 1049 (Speier) - As Amended:  May 9, 2001

           SENATE VOTE  :   24-11
           
          SUBJECT  :   County employees' retirement: domestic partners: San  
          Mateo County.

           SUMMARY  :   Authorizes the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors  
          to adopt a resolution providing domestic partners of San Mateo  
          County employees the same survivor benefits now received by  
          spouses of eligible county employees.  Specifically,  this bill  :   
           

          1)Provides that same sex domestic partners, or opposite sex  
            domestic partners over age 62, of San Mateo County employees  
            will be eligible for the same survivor benefits received by  
            spouses of county employees.

          2)Specifies that only domestic partners of county employees who  
            meet the above criteria and for whom there has been an  
            Affidavit of Domestic Partnership on file with the county for  
            at least one year prior to the member's death are eligible to  
            receive the survivor benefits.

          3)Specifies that these provisions will not take effect until  
            adopted by the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. 

           EXISTING LAW  , as contained in the County Employees' Retirement  
          Law of 1937 ('37 Act) provides that only spouses of eligible  
          county employees are entitled to survivor benefits provided by  
          the county retirement system when an eligible county employee  
          dies either before or after retirement (if no spouse, minor  
          children are entitled).

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   Unknown

           COMMENTS  :   Supporters contend that this bill will help San  
          Mateo County retain the services of valuable employees in a  
          domestic partner relationship by making it possible for these  
          employees to provide for their partners upon death.








                                                                  SB 1049
                                                                  Page  2


          This bill is similar to SB 1410 (Speier) of 2000 which was  
          vetoed by the Governor.  In his veto message, the Governor  
          stated, in part, that "This bill would allow San Mateo County to  
          provide new domestic partner benefits using a definition of  
          domestic partners that goes far beyond that of the State  
          program.  For these reasons I cannot support this bill."

          The author attempted to address the Governor's concerns by  
          amending this bill in the Senate to use the definition of  
          domestic partner that is contained in the Family Code.

          The Committee is advised that the author will be offering  
          amendments in Committee that specify that when there is a  
          surviving dependent child, he or she will retain the death and  
          survivor benefits until the child reaches age 19, marries, or  
          turns age 22 if enrolled in college at which time the benefits  
          may be accorded the domestic partner.  The proposed amendments  
          also provide that if the dependent child elects to receive a  
          lump sum payment, the payment will be shared proportionally  
          among all surviving dependent children and the domestic partner.

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :

           Support 
           
          American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees  
          (Sponsor)
           
            Opposition 
           
          None on file.

           Analysis Prepared by  :    Karon Green / P.E., R. & S.S. /  
          (916)319-3957