Health Care Measures Make Their Way to Schwarzenegger
On Tuesday, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) signed legislation (SB 443) that would permit the wives or partners of HIV-positive men to conceive in some cases, while the Legislature forwarded other health care-related measures to the governor, the Los Angeles Times reports (McGreevy/Vogel, Los Angeles Times, 9/12) (News low in story). The bill applies to conception using assisted reproductive technology (Bill text, 9/11).
Under the bill by Sen. Carole Migden (D-San Francisco), "sperm washing" techniques will be required to minimize the risk of transmitting HIV to the woman or infant (Los Angeles Times, 9/12).
Meanwhile, the Legislature approved a measure that would provide lifetime, state-funded health insurance coverage to the survivors of federal firefighters killed in action in California (Miller, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 9/11).
The governor also is considering SB 936, which would increase benefits for workers with permanent disabilities stemming from their jobs.
Supporters say the measure is needed because disability payments in California are among the lowest in the nation. Most employers oppose the bill, arguing that it would mitigate some of the changes to workers' compensation reforms that Gov. Schwarzenegger signed in 2004.
Schwarzenegger has not taken a public stand on the bill but previously has voiced opposition to proposals that could cause workers' compensation insurance premiums to increase.
The Legislature also approved SB 7, which would prohibit smoking in cars if children are present (Los Angeles Times, 9/12).