The Chamber's Transportation & Goods Movement Council received an update from Metrolink CEO Art Leahy and Ontario International Airport (ONT) CEO Mark Thorpe on plans to enhance air and rail travel in the L.A. region. Leahy shared Metrolink's Southern California Optimized Rail Expansion (SCORE) proposal with the Council. The program includes service improvements to increase train frequency and decrease travel delays system-wide. Thorpe reviewed planned updates to ONT's facilities, including terminal improvements and expanded customs services. Thorpe also discussed plans to increase business travel with Asia.
Supervisor Mark-Ridley Thomas joined the Chamber's Health Care Council for an in-depth discussion on County health and hospital services, homelessness and cannabis. Supervisor Ridley-Thomas elaborated on the work being done through Measure H funding and County homelessness issues, saying, "We have to dig deep in terms of our imagination and values." The Supervisor added that the business community should "raise expectations of officials who say homelessness is a priority" and "hold them accountable."
The Council was joined by two Metro executives -- Senior Executive Officer Manjeet Ranu with the Countywide Planning and Development Department, and Deputy Chief Innovation Officer Nadine Lee from the Office of Extraordinary Innovation -- to discuss what Metro is working on for 2018.
The Accenture Pancakes & Politics speaker series wrapped up 2017 with Cal State University Chancellor Tim White. Each year, the 23 CSU campuses produce over 100,000 graduates, the vast majority of which stay to work in California. The Chancellor discussed upcoming budget challenges, the impacts of federal tax reform and the strides the system has made in increasing female leadership.
The Transportation & Goods Movement Council was joined by Brian Annis, Undersecretary, California State Transportation Agency, to discuss the progress of SB 1 planning and implementation. SB 1 is expected to generate $5.2 billion annually to fund our roads, highways and bridge infrastructure.
Through a public-private partnership with NBCUniversal and others, the opportunity exists to develop and advance key mobility projects that will address unmet needs in the 101/134 Cahuenga Pass corridor, improve operations, and provide congestion relief. We hope to present these ideas to transportation funding decision-makers and seek to inform the business community because we believe the message will be stronger with a business-based coalition joining in support of the proposed mobility projects.