VICA Weekly
Valley Industry & Commerce Association

September 2, 2022

In This Issue
  • VICA After Dark with LA Fire Chief Kristin Crowley
  • Your Voice is Needed: VICA High Priority Bills with Gov. Newsom
  • LA County Water Shutdown to Affect Los Angeles Residents
  • Harmon Ballin Community Service Award
  • Become A VICA Board Member
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Happy Labor Day! This coming Monday, September 5, the VICA Office will be closed. 

"VICA plays such a vital role in business advocacy and is a leading voice for local businesses on public policy, civil leadership, representation, and conscious community engagement."

Los Angeles Fire Chief Kristin Crowley

Speaking at Wednesday's VICA After Dark Event

VICA After Dark with Los Angeles Fire Department Chief Kristin Crowley

VICA was pleased to host a VICA After Dark with Los Angeles Fire Department Chief Kristin Crowley.

Chief Crowley joined VICA to discuss pertinent issues, such as safety matters, ways in which the LAFD can begin to build upon diversity, equity, and inclusion and how the LAFD can work with VICA and the business community.

She began the event by discussing the amazing work that many front line workers provide and the humility that she is reminded of every day by the dedication and commitment to service by those who serve in the LAFD, as medical providers, law enforcement, and all other service fields that have a hand in the community. 

As the newly appointed 19th Chief of the LAFD, she is also the first female fire chief in 136 years and is focused on ensuring that LAFD takes a positive approach and role in making sure equity and inclusion weaved into the organizational fabric.

Discussing how her leadership will affect the Department's priorities, she stated the LAFD is in the middle of creating the 3rd strategic plan in the entire history of their department and is working to reach out to internal and external stakeholders, stating that VICA needs to play a role in how the LAFD can better serve the community and businesses within the San Fernando Valley.

She closed her statements by emphasizing the importance of a thriving economy, stating "your LAFD will strive to strike the balance between public safety, which is very important...and meeting the critical need of housing and other developments".

VICA thanks our Presenting Sponsors Sun Hill Properties/Hilton Universal CityMedtransUnibail-Rodamco-Westfield, our Co-Sponsors Anthem Blue CrossLos Angeles Rams, and our Leadership Sponsor Cedars Sinai. Thank you to the Hilton Universal City for hosting our event.

Kristen Wesley (Anthem Blue Cross), VICA Chair Victor Berrellez (US Bank), Mark Davis (Hilton Universal City), LAFD Fire Chief Kristin Crowley, VICA 1st Chair Lupita Sanchez Cornejo (AT&T), Avo Avetisyan (Medtrans Inc.), and Maria Camacho (LA Rams).

Your Voice is Needed: VICA's High Priority Bills are on Newsom's Desk

The legislative session has officially ended. Governor Gavin Newsom has until Friday, September 30 to sign or veto any bill that the legislature has passed. 

VICA urges you to express your position. Below are VICA's high-priority bills that are on the Governor's desk. Click on the Take Action buttons to voice your position.

Veto the Un-Elected Fast Food Council

Assembly Bill 257 (Holden) would impose a new regulatory "Fast Food Sector Council" that would set a minimum wage of $22 an hour, oversee scheduling, and other working conditions.

AB 257 would unravel the franchise business model that has existed for over 150 years and would have a broad impact on any chain in California that has at least 30 stores nationwide, leading to decreased franchisor participation due to increased costs and liabilities, ultimately hurting the California economy.

Take Action

Prevent Employees From Walking Off the Job Without Consequence

Senate Bill 1044 (Durazo) would prohibit an employer in the event of an emergency condition, from taking or threatening action against any employee who refuses to report to or leave a workplace if the employee feels unsafe.

SB 1044 ignores protections that are already provided under CalOSHA, and allows workers to walk away regardless of how distant certain emergencies are. An employer who disciplines an employee will be subject to a lawsuit and penalties under the Private Attorney General Act (PAGA).

Take Action

Veto Energy Sector Job Killer 

Senate Bill 1137 (Gonzalez) would result in a loss of thousands of blue-collar jobs and vital revenue to local communities by instituting a 3200-foot setback requirement from various structure and community regions, undermining the Governor's three-year regulatory process for health and safety rules around oil and gas extraction facilities.

SB 1137 would limit in-state production and ignore the realities associated with increasing waterborne imports, lead to loss of high wage jobs, and the loss of millions of dollars in revenue for local and State governments.

Take Action

Support Ending Retail Crime

Assembly Bill 1613 (Blakeslee) would expand the Attorney General's reach to prosecute theft offenses and associated offenses with organized retail crime.

AB 1613 would give any District Attorney's office the authority over cases that cross county lines and would support law enforcement and prosecutors with the tools to address sophisticated retail theft that hurt businesses, workers, and their customers.

Take Action

Support Early Childhood Education

Senate Bill 70 (Rubio) would require a child to have completed one year of kindergarten before that child may be admitted to the first grade.

SB 70 would ensure children receive critical instructions that help them develop necessary social skills, problem-solving, and long-term academic readiness and also provides economic benefits for disadvantaged families.

Take Action

Support Ending Online Sale of Stolen Goods

Senate Bill 301 (Skinner) would provide much needed transparency to online marketplaces, providing consumers with the real, verified business contact information for high volume, third-party sellers. The bill will also provide retailers and law enforcement information to investigate the source of possible stolen or counterfeit items when discovered.

With retail theft skyrocketing with cities and counties seeing a 700% increase in crime and online platforms being used to facilitate a mainstream black market, SB 301 will make online marketplaces transparent by rooting out bad actors, and connecting consumers and verified businesses.

Take Action

Support Small Business Improvements

Assembly Bill 2164 (Lee) would provide funds for small businesses to make their business accessible to those with disabilities.

Owners will be able to improve their stores, resulting in fewer ADA lawsuits, and allowing businesses to focus on their customers.

Take Action

Support Clean Transit Projects

Senate Bill 922 (Wiener) is on the Governors desk, where if signed, would accelerate bike, pedestrian, light rail, and rapid bus projects. 

SB 922 will ensure California invests in equitable transportation projects, builds sustainable transportation and address the climate concerns while ensuring infrastructure and the economy don't come at the expense of our environment.

Take Action

VICA Members Amazon, History for Hire and LA Dodgers Donate to the International Women's Baseball Center  

250px-A_League_of_Their_Own_2022 image

During VICA's Sports, Entertainment, Tourism, and Hospitality (SETH) Committee, chair Pam Eleya (History for Hire) announced that in support of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Amazon's new series "A League of Their Own," for every person's "Go Dodgers!" cheer, History for Hire would donate $50 to the International Women's Baseball Center (IWBC).

Following introductions, a tally indicated that a total donation amount of $1,000 would be provided in donations. In a surge of support and comradery amongst members, Naomi Rodriguez (Los Angeles Dodgers), said she would match the contributions. SETH Committee Co-Chair Marie Lloyd (Amazon) also announced they would match the donation.

A total of $3,000 will be donated to the IWBC. For more information in the IWBC, click here.

Don't Forget: LA County Water Shutdown Begins on Tuesday

This Tuesday, September 6, residents and businesses in Los Angeles County will need to suspend outdoor watering for 15 days for emergency repairs to our water pipelines.

After a leak was discovered in the 36-mile Upper Feeder Pipeline early in 2022, the City made temporary repairs and operated the pipeline at reduced capacity while a more permanent solution was designed and developed. The repairs are to be made between September 6th through September 20th.

Metropolitan member agencies under this call include cities of Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Long Beach, Pasadena, San Fernando, Torrance, as well as the Central Basin Municipal Water District, the Foothill Municipal Water District, Three Valley's Municipal Water District, and the West Basin Municipal Water District.

Prior to shutdown, residents should aerate their lawns, avoid mowing, and perform deep watering for plants, gardens, trees, and equip with mulch for added water retention. While the shutdown is occurring, residents and businesses should delay new planting, avoid fertilizing lawns, and weed out gardens to allow for more water retention for actual plants until September 20th. Remember to set your sprinkler time to "Off" on September 5th.

Residents and businesses who want to know more about how the shutdown will affect them should contact their water provider or click here to send an email to the Metropolitan Water District's Community Relations. For updates on the shutdown, click the here.

One Week Left for Nominations:

Harmon Ballin Community Service Award

VICA's Harmon Ballin Community Service Award annually honors an active VICA member who has made an outstanding contribution to our community through their long-term community service activities. A nominee is someone who:

  1. Has been an active member of VICA and is actively engaged in the organization.
  2. Has significant and long-term involvement in philanthropic, community, or public service organizations or a significant record in this area.
  3. Is a role model and community leader.

All nominee forms must be submitted via email to by Friday, September 9, 2022.

About Harmon Ballin

Harmon Ballin was a great leader and a long-standing member of VICA. He is remembered for his calm manner, leadership style and the respect he carried throughout the Valley. Ballin was involved in many nonprofits and programs, and his energy was an inspiration to everyone who knew him. When he suddenly passed away during the pinnacle of his career and civic leadership, it was a sad time for the Valley for we had lost one of the true leaders of our community. Instead of mourning Harmon Ballin, VICA celebrates and honors his legacy by bestowing this award on other dedicated civic leaders.


Some past honorees include: Ross Hopkins, Stu Solomon, Sandy Paris, Walt Mosher, Fred Gaines, Jim Garrison, Kevin Tamaki, Greg Lippe, Brad Rosenheim, Francine Oschin, Pegi Matsuda, Ross Pendergraft, Jane Skeeter, Lee Alpert, Darnell Tyler and Mark Davis. 

Nomination Form

Last Chance: Interested in VICA Board Membership? Apply Now!

VICA's 2023 Board of Directors nomination and selection process is underway and we want your nominations!

Board members must be able to attend regular board meetings and be prepared to vote on a wide variety of public policy issues. Board members must also attend regular committee meetings and VICA events. Additional responsibilities may include calling or writing lawmakers, attending press conferences, testifying, authoring editorials, interacting with top opinion leaders, and more.

VICA is also accepting applications if you are interested in chairing a committee.

If you or someone you know is interested in participating on the VICA Board in 2023 or chairing a committee, please don't hesitate to click on the nomination form below and submit via email at no later than Friday, September 9, 2022.

Board Nomination Form
LA City Attorney Mike Feuer swears in the 2022 VICA Board of Directors.

VICA Vacancy

Click on the image above to apply!


VICA Thanks Our New and Renewing Members

Platinum Members:

Bronze Members:

Renewing Members:

New Members:


VICA After Dark: LAWA CEO Justin Erbacci

Thursday, September 29 | 5:30 PM

The Park VNY

Justin Erbacci serves as the Chief Executive Officer for Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) - managing over 3500 adminsitrative, technical, and law-enforcement employees for the nation's second largest city and business hub in Los Angeles.

VICA thanks our Presenting Sponsors,

Van Nuys Airports, Bechtel Corp., Clay Lacy Aviation, and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield Airports.

Register Here

Business Forecast Conference: Attack of the Inflation Monster

Friday, October 21 | 7:00 AM

Hilton Universal City

Our Annual Business Forecast Conference continues to attract nationally recognized experts on our region's dynamic economy. This forecast will help our business leaders plan for the challenges facing us in 2023.

VICA thanks our Presenting Sponsors, SoCalGas and Wells Fargo.

Register Here
Sponsor Here

VICA After Dark: Supervisor Kathryn Barger

Thursday, October 27 | 5:30 PM


Supervisor Kathryn Barger serves the residents of the 5th District — Los Angeles County’s largest — spanning over 2,785 square miles, which includes 20 cities and 83 unincorporated communities in the Antelope, San Gabriel, San Fernando, Crescenta, and Santa Clarita Valleys.

VICA thanks our Presenting Sponsors, Amazon, Comcast, NBCUniversal, SoCalGas, Southland Regional Association of Realtors, and Wells Fargo.

Register Here

The Week Ahead

Ambassador Committee Meeting

Wednesday, September 7

9:00 - 10:30 AM

VICA Office

Sponsored by Verdugo Hills Council, Boy Scouts of America


Healthcare Committee Meeting

Thursday, September 8

12:00 - 1:30 PM

VICA Office

Sponsored by Hospital Association of Southern California


Save the Date

Transportation Committee Meeting

Tuesday, September 13

8:30 - 10:30 AM

Hosted by The Garland


Not-for-Profit Committee Meeting

Thursday, October 6

8:30 - 10:00 AM

VICA Office

Sponsored by Pacific Federal


Government Affairs Committee Meeting

Wednesday, September 21

Noon - 2:00 PM

VICA Office

Sponsored by Dolphin Group 


Land Use Committee Meeting

Tuesday, October 11

8:30 - 10:30 AM

Hosted by The Garland


View Calendar

VICA in the News

Hotels in Los Angeles Could Soon be Forced to Give Vacant Rooms to Homeless People

UNILAD | August 26

Proposal to Force Hotels to Offer Vacant Rooms to Homeless Lands on LA's 2024 Ballot

MRCTV | August 26

Will California Force Hotels to Host Homeless People?

El American |August 26

Should Los Angeles Hotels Be Opened Up to House Homeless?

News Nation | August 27

Los Angeles Could Require hotels to Offer Vacant Rooms to the Homeless

Legal Insurrection | August 29

LA Voters to Decide on Housing Homeless in Vacant Hotel Rooms

Newsmax | August 30

Offering Empty Hotel Rooms to Homeless Persons May Become Mandatory. Los Angeles Voters Will Decide

Upworthy | August 30

Hot News

Biden funds $37B for Crime Prevention

On Tuesday, President Joe Biden presented his "Safe America Plan" which would provide $37 billion in congressional funds for policing and crime prevention, including $13 billion for the federal COPS Hiring program. Federal funding would provide hiring opportunities for 100,000 police officers across the United States. This comes following the Major Cities Chiefs Association report stating a 50% increase in homicides and 36% in aggravated assaults.

Lawmakers Resurrect Bail Reform

California lawmakers resurrected and amended SB 262, which would prohibit defendants who are out of jail and awaiting trial from being charged for the cost of ankle monitors or other conditions of their release. If charges against defendants are dismissed or not filed within 60 days of arrest, courts must return bail premiums. This bill is opposed by the bail industry, which argues agents would have a financial disincentive to bail out defendants who are likely to be innocent or show up during court proceedings. 

LA to Clear Homeless Encampments

Following an NBC4 investigation report on trash piling up near the 101 freeway since 2018, the Department of Transportation publicly committed to conducting major cleanups across Los Angeles' highways. Since then, the department has sent outreach workers to find more permanent housing for people living in homeless encampments along the 101, dismantled 38 encampments, and planted drought-resistant succulents on on-ramps in downtown Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. In addition, Caltrans dedicated $179 million to landscaping, rock scaping, and further cleaning of highways throughout Los Angeles and Ventura County.

New Ballot Proposal for Bike-Bus Lane

Los Angeles City Council voted to allow residents to consider an initiative on the 2024 ballot, that would improve transportation safety across the city by mandating city agencies install bus lanes, bike routes, and/or transportation projects every time major roadwork is conducted on its busiest streets. Backers of the measure say it would cut down on traffic fatalities while making it easier for people to get around. Council members pledged to work with safety activists to achieve some of these goals before the proposal is voted on.

Council to Demobilize Project Roomkey

Los Angeles City Council authorized $2.9 million in funding Friday to demobilize Project Roomkey. The council voted to temporarily extend the program at it's three remaining sites, but did not approve an additional $3.1 million requested by the Homeless Services Authority to support and place residents exiting the program. Previously, the Council authorized $2.5 million to provide housing navigation services to program participants, which has over 700 people remaining on the Roomkey program.

Serena Williams the the U.S. Open

As the first week of the U.S. Open Championships draws to a close, the tennis world, in fact the sports world, is enthralled with Serena Williams like never before in her 20-plus years of dominance.

Why? Because she's turning a moment that was supposed to be about her legacy, into a moment about her tennis.

She set the stage for this special Open by writing last month that likely it would be her last. The biggest to-do happened the night of Williams' first round match against Danka Kovinic of Montenegro, but then she beat Kovinic in straight sets, and number-two seed Anett Kontaveit in three sets.

Member Spotlight
Are you interested in a Membership Spotlight?
Answer the below questions, send responses and a professional photo,
and we'll ensure your in the line up for 2022!


Please keep each question response to 2-4 sentences maximum.

  1. Please share a bit about your background and a fun fact that people would love to learn, ie: scrapbooking is your favorite hobby, you were in a band, you have traveled around the world…  
  2. What has been your organization’s largest accomplishment or efforts made over the past year? 
  3. Please share how VICA has supported your business strategy or expanded your footprint with the business community?  

Send responses and headshot to Jessica Yasukochi

Send Your Responses Now!
Member Messages
Member Messages
Get Your Message in VICA Weekly!
VICA members can promote their business, events and news in VICA Weekly. Member messages are available for $50 per week or $175 for four weeks. Messages are text-based and may not contain more than 70 words. A logo may be added for an additional $5 per week. For more information or to schedule your member message, contact or call (818) 817-0545.
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San Fernando Valley cities of Los Angeles, Burbank, Glendale, Calabasas,
Hidden Hills, San Fernando and Santa Clarita.
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