Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce I Jan. 21
 

ACCESS Washington, D.C. 2020 Registration Open
As we get closer to the 2020 election cycle, we are faced with a critical opportunity to have an impact at the federal level. Last week, we opened registration for our annual ACCESS Washington, D.C. trip that will take place March 9-11 at the Mayflower Hotel. ACCESS D.C. is the region's largest annual advocacy trip which connects more than 200 regional business and civic leaders with federal lawmakers on pertinent issues facing the Southern California region, ranging from immigration to housing, to transportation and health care. Our region needs to ensure that we are part of the national dialogue and convey a cohesive advocacy agenda to policymakers across the country. To see highlights from last year's ACCESS D.C. trip, please CLICK HERE. REGISTER NOW.
 
L.A. City Council President Martinez Lays Out Leadership Agenda
Last week, newly elected L.A. City Council President Nury Martinez led her first official city council meeting, marking a historic day for the City of Los Angeles. Council President Martinez is the first Latina elected to serve as the leader of the Los Angeles City Council. In her opening speech, she set the foundation for her future goals and set a clear "families first" agenda while introducing five separate motions to address multiple issues.
  1. Instructed multiple city departments to evaluate the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority's governing structure and assess other models for the delivery of homeless services
  2. Instructed relevant city departments to review the Enhanced Comprehensive Homeless Strategy and report on the progress to ensure each strategy includes measurable goals by which the City can evaluate its progress, assess what they are working on and make recommendations to improve.
  3. Instructed city departments to design and create a youth internship program for low-income high school students to introduce them to city jobs.
  4. Instructed city departments to look into the feasibility of installing a pilot revolving loan program through the Van Nuys FamilySource Center to help the most vulnerable families pay for necessities during a financial emergency, who would otherwise be in the prime position to transition into homelessness.
  5. Requested a report back on the feasibility of providing a business preference for City contracts to businesses who employ foster youth or youth transitioning out of the foster care system.
The Chamber is incredibly excited to work with Council President Martinez's office and congratulates this historic accomplishment.
 
First Housing Development Opens with Proposition HHH Funding
The Chamber has been working tirelessly in partnership with the City, County and the United Way of Greater Los Angeles to address homelessness. Our coalition was an integral part in passing Proposition HHH and the adoption of the Strategic Plan on Homelessness. Recently, Chamber President & CEO Maria S. Salinas attended the first HHH housing project ribbon cutting with L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Councilmember Herb Wesson, United Way of Greater Los Angeles Executive Director Elise Buik and other key nonprofit leaders. The project on 88th and Vermont marks a turning point in efforts to combat homelessness and the housing crisis as more housing created from HHH funds will be ready for residents.
 
Chamber Leadership Meets with Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas
Chamber President & CEO Maria S. Salinas met with L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas to discuss the innovative work the County of Los Angeles is doing to serve Angelenos experiencing homelessness and the potential opportunities that the Chamber can lead and partner with the County on to tackle these difficult issues. As Co-Chair of Gov. Gavin Newsom's Council of Regional Homeless Advisors, Supervisor Ridley-Thomas shared that the focus of the state's budget in addressing homelessness is based on the creative strategies that originated from L.A. County.
 
Chamber Supports L.A. County Fire Department's March 2020 Ballot Measure
The Los Angeles County Fire Department will be placing a parcel tax on the March 2020 ballot aimed towards increasing revenue for a department that serves more than 4 million residents in Los Angeles County. The L.A. County Fire Department is uniquely set up within the governing structure of the County and cannot rely on general fund dollars. This measure would impose an assessment of $0.06 per square foot of improved property. The measure puts in place an independent citizen's oversight committee tasked with ensuring these funds are appropriated effectively and efficiently. The Chamber's Government & Fiscal Affairs Council heard a presentation from the Los Angeles County Fire Department and chose to take a "No" position stance and defer to the Executive Committee for further discussion. The Executive Committee did vote to take a support position and the Chamber has signed on to the official rebuttal. To see the full language for the ballot measure that was adopted by the Board of Supervisors, please CLICK HERE.
 
Delving into Education in the 2020 CA Budget
The Chamber was excited to kick off its first Education & Workforce Development Council of 2020 on Friday, where we welcomed Jeff Bell, Education Program Budget Manager at the California Department of Finance, and Edgar Cabral, Deputy Legislative Analyst at the Legislative Analyst's Office. The two experts dove into Gov. Gavin Newsom's budget proposal, highlighting key education investments for fiscal year 2020-21. Cabral noted that this year's budget has a focus on teacher pipeline investments that will address teacher shortages in California. There is also proposed funding for undocumented students in higher education. The Chamber is eager to learn how Gov. Newsom's budget will continue to uplift students and educators in California. SEE THE PHOTOS.
 
Chief Sustainability Officers Speak to Energy, Water & Environmental Sustainability Council
The Energy, Water & Environmental Sustainability Council hosted the Chief Sustainability Officers from the City of Los Angeles and County of Los Angeles. In the special meeting, Lauren Faber O'Connor, from the Office of L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, explained the science-based approach to L.A.'s Green New Deal pLAn, which upholds and addresses the Paris Climate Accords. Faber O'Connor walked the Council through "L.A.'s 5 Zeros" and the plan's call to reduce emissions everywhere and rapidly. These changes include: zero carbon grid, zero carbon buildings, zero carbon transportation, zero waste and zero wasted water. Gary Gero, Chief Sustainability Officer at the County of Los Angeles, also spoke with the Council about the OurCounty Plan. After a brief walkthrough of the plan's history, he discussed how the County will implement the plan's near-term goals. Based off of input from County departments and the public, the Chief Sustainability Office identified 58 near-term priorities that it will submit to the Board for the 2020-21 fiscal year. Both Gero and Faber O'Connor emphasized that the approach to sustainability is regional and the coordination that went on between the County and City of Los Angeles to develop the plans. At the end of the meeting, the Council also reviewed the draft 2020 policy agenda. SEE THE PHOTOS.
 
Transportation & Goods Movement Council Update
Last week, the Transportation & Goods Movement Council held its first meeting of 2020 with a presentation focused on the California Freight Mobility Plan 2020 from Yatman Kwan, the Office Chief for the California Department of Transportation Freight Planning Division. There was a thorough conversation around multiple topics, including the opportunity to connect past plans with the new proposed draft, moving towards sustainable freight and revisiting suggested ideas for the proposed plan. The Council also reviewed and approved the policy priorities for the year in concept, with follow-ups on specific federal policy priorities.
 
Policy Council Updates
Upcoming councils:
  • Land Use, Construction & Housing - Wednesday, Jan. 22, with L.A. City Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson. RSVP HERE.
  • Energy, Water & Environmental Sustainability - Thursday, Feb. 6. RSVP HERE.
  • Transportation & Goods Movement - Tuesday, March 3. RSVP HERE.
 

POLICY CALENDAR


 
Jan. 21 - California Clean Air Day L.A. Working Group
Jan. 22 - R.E.A.L. CEOs Statewide Convening
Jan. 23 - Metro Board Meeting
Jan. 23 - Homeless Policy Deputies Meeting
Jan. 24 - Infrastructure Tour (Colorado River Aqueduct)
 
SB 50 Revival Sought, With Big Changes, Santa Monica Mirror, 1.13.20; Sacramento Joins Los Angeles in Spearheading Mobility Innovation, JD Supra, 1.8.20; When can a sidewalk be a home for the homeless?, Gulf Today, 12.11.19; Chambers of Commerce: Unlikely, but effective champions of education success, Lumina Foundation, 12.3.19
L.A. Area Chamber | laareachamber@lachamber.com | http://www.lachamber.com
350 S. Bixel St.
Los Angeles, CA 90017