"In the 1990's, the [California] Legislature amended the statutory scheme governing general assistance (GA) [welfare benefits] in order to allow counties to adopt specified restrictions on benefits and thereby obtain relief from the fiscal burdens of the state-mandated program."
"One such restriction . . . permits a county to place a time limit upon the receipt of GA benefits by an 'employable individual.'"
"We conclude the county's regulations imposing a time limitation upon the receipt of GA benefits by recipients deemed 'employable' are consistent and not in conflict with section 17001.5(a)(4), the statute that authorizes the limitation. A definition of 'employable' that turns upon a person's physical or mental fitness to work is consistent with the plain meaning and common usage of the term."
"The Legislature understood that the limitation it authorized would result in the periodic discontinuation of GA benefits for persons who would otherwise qualify for this program of last resort, and it was aware that some individuals would suffer hardship as a result. Whatever we may think of this outcome, or of the wisdom of the legislation that permits it, it is not for us to rewrite the law . . . ."