VICA Weekly
Valley Industry & Commerce Association
Friday, February 5
In This Issue
  • Quote of the Week
  • Action Alert: Hazard Pay
  • Members
  • Upcoming Events
  • VICA Advocacy
  • Hot News
  • Member Spotlight
  • 2021 Government Handbook
  • Member Messages
"We don't fully understand why grocery workers aren't getting vaccinated right away. That is the priority. Getting Hazard Pay isn't going to help someone who gets sick."
VICA President Stuart Waldman
City Council Meeting - February 2, 2021
Voice Your Concerns with the Proposed Hazard Pay Policies
This week, VICA urged the Los Angeles City Council to complete a thorough economic and policy analysis before voting on a Grocery Hazard Pay ordinance. Still, the Los Angeles City Council moved forward with a proposal requiring grocery stores to provide Hazard Pay to their employees.

This $5 per hour increase, which has also been moved forward by the County Board of Supervisors, is equivalent to a 30 percent wage increase, a cost which would be passed onto consumers in the form of higher grocery costs. This cost will be passed onto consumers and will negatively impact many in our region who are already struggling to afford living expenses during the pandemic.

In addition to this disastrous ordinance, Councilmember Buscaino introduced a motion this week calling for an emergency ordinance which would provide low wage, frontline workers with an additional $5 per hour in Hazard Pay to many sectors, "including, but not limited to: the goods movement/logistics, healthcare, transportation, janitorial services and delivery services." This indiscriminate proposal is a thinly veiled attempt to raise the minimum wage for workers in Los Angeles.

As a result of similar Hazard Pay ordinances by the Long Beach City Council, the Kroger Co. announced the permanent closure of 25 percent of its stores in Long Beach. Proposals like Buscaino's could cause Los Angeles to see a similar fate for businesses in a wide variety of sectors.
Members
VICA Welcomes Our New Members
VICA Thanks Our Renewing Members
Premier Partner:
Bronze Member:
Upcoming Events

Early Bird Ticket Price: $50
(Purchase before February 19)
Regular Ticket Price: $100
Includes Breakfast

Circle of Influence & Business Leader members receive a free ticket to this event - please contact Cathy to reserve your free seat. 
EVENT SPONSORSHIPS STILL AVAILABLE!
Contact Shauna Carter for additional details.
Shauna@vica.com | 805.558.0731
The Week Ahead
Land Use Committee Meeting
Tuesday, February 9
8 to 10 a.m.
Online Video Conference
EEMU Committee Meeting
Wednesday, February 10
Noon to 1:30 p.m.
Online Video Conference
Save the Date
Government Affairs Committee Meeting
Wednesday, February 17
9 to 11 a.m.
Online Video Conference
VICA's February Advocacy Day
Tuesday, February 23
Online Video Conference
Only 12 Spots Available!
Ambassador Committee Meeting
Tuesday, February 23
10 to 11 a.m.
Online Video Conference
VICA Advocacy
Action Alert: Send a Letter to the Legislature Telling Them to Vote NO on ACA 1
VICA opposes Assembly Constitutional Amendment 1 (Aguiar-Curry), which would allow local governments to increase taxes with a 55 percent vote of the electorate - rather than the two-thirds vote currently required under the California Constitution - if the tax proceeds are earmarked for public infrastructure or affordable housing.

It is important to improve infrastructure and increase housing availability, but higher taxes on working Californians runs counter to the goal of making the state more affordable.

Send a letter to legislators urging them to oppose ACA 1.
Action Alert: Tell Lawmakers to Oppose Unnecessary Election Day Holidays
VICA opposes Assembly Bill 53 (Low), which would establish a statewide Election Day holiday. In doing this, AB 53 would require that community colleges and public schools close, and that state employees be given paid time off for Election Day Holidays.

California already requires employers to provide employees with up to two hours of paid time off to vote. By making Election Day holidays, AB 53 would disrupt instructional calendars, requiring schools to add another day of instruction somewhere else in the year. Further, while this bill does not require the private sector to provide a paid day off, closing schools would mean that parents will likely have to take time off work to supervise their children, resulting in lost wages for the employee and reduced workflows for the employers. This could even cause a reduction of voting rates in the general population, as parents will be incumbered with finding childcare on Election Day.

Further, AB 53 is not necessary. California has one of the most accessible absentee voting systems in the country.

Send a letter to legislators urging them to oppose AB 53.
Hot News
Economy
The US added 49,000 jobs in January after a 227,000 job loss in December. Despite gains, the US has only recovered 55% of jobs lost during the pandemic.

COVID-19
COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations are dropping quickly in LA County, but officials stress that we are not in the clear as cases are still above pre-surge levels.

Homelessness
LA will have 7,971 new housing units for the homeless by 2024 through three initiatives: A Bridge Home, Proposition HHH, and the COVID-19 Roadmap.
Reopening LAUSD
LA City Councilmember Buscaino has announced that he will introduce a motion next week to ask the City to sue LAUSD to reopen for in person instruction.

Vaccines
LA County Public Health Officials are set to unveil a plan for vaccinating the next phase of residents, including teachers and other essential employees.

Federal COVID-19 Relief
The U.S. Senate has voted to approve a budget resolution that will fast-track Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 Relief Plan, with the Vice President as a tiebreaker.
Member Spotlight
Elsa Jacobsen - Child360
As native Angeleno, Elsa Jacobsen currently serves as the Director of Public Policy at Child360, an early learning non-profit based in DTLA. In this role, she works to further policies that advance equity in early childhood education at the local, state and federal levels. Through budget advocacy, candidate forums and a host of other measures, she and her team seek to increase access to early childhood programs and to support the early care and education (ECE) field. Before joining Child360, Elsa served as a law clerk at Young, Minney & Corr, LLP, where she worked on critical education law issues for charter school clients. Prior to law school, she served fellowships at the California Department of Education and in the office of the late Congressman Tom Lantos (D-CA), worked on the field staff of a congressional campaign in New England, and earned an MA and a BA from Stanford University. Fun Fact: Once upon a time before COVID, Elsa performed with a salsa dance troupe here in Los Angeles, but is now finding other happy outlets in biking, surfing and trying out new recipes on her parents during Sunday dinners.

When VICA asked a few additional questions, these responses were shared:

Tell us about your belief in VICA, how has VICA been most valuable for you?  
VICA is an incredible “connector” and consistently provides Child360 and other members with terrific opportunities to speak with and hear from legislators about pressing issues affecting our region. In addition, participation in VICA’s Education Committee has enabled me and my Child360 colleagues to strengthen relationships with other members and to receive information from education experts, advocates and administrators that informs our policy work.   

If you were to share an experience about VICA, what would that be? 
I would mention the time that VICA’s team worked with Child360 to draft a formal email to the Governor’s office about a critical budget issue impacting child care providers, who are also small business owners. The email (which came from VICA’s president) was sent at a time when the Governor’s office had indicated a need to hear from partners outside the early childhood field. Ultimately, the budget issue was favorably decided, and we were grateful that VICA had served as an ally on this important matter.   

What do you believe to be the greatest accomplishment VICA has achieved? 
Consistently serving as a leading voice for business and providing its members – year after year – with a plethora of excellent opportunities to expand their professional networks, to meet directly with legislators, and to stay abreast of policy and political developments in a host of sectors.

What was your organizations and/or your greatest accomplishment in 2020? 
For Child360’s public policy team, one of our greatest accomplishments was running a census education campaign that reached over 89,000 residents from hard-to-count LA County neighborhoods, diverse partner organizations, and local, state and federal legislative offices.

Can you share what VICA has meant for you and your business during COVID? 
During the pandemic, VICA hasn’t missed a beat in providing opportunities for Child360 and other VICA members to connect with local, state and federal elected officials about a variety of policy issues. During a time when most in-person meetings aren’t possible, it has been invaluable to hear directly from legislators about their policy priorities during VICA After Darks and other virtual events. Personally, I’ve also looked forward to and enjoyed VICA’s banner events – such as the State Officeholders Dinner – which are always executed with signature humor and good food, and provide an especially welcome respite from the sameness of quarantine.
MUST BE A CURRENT VICA MEMBER TO BE FEATURED!

> Please share a brief biography and a fun fact about yourself that people would love to learn, ie: you love skydiving, you have run a marathon, you started your own business at a young age, etc. (2-3 sentences) 

> Tell us about your belief in VICA, how has VICA been most valuable for you? 

> If you were to share an experience with someone about VICA, what would that be? 
 
> Share with us what you believe to be the greatest accomplishment VICA has achieved?

> What was your organizations and/or your greatest accomplishment in 2020?

> Can you share what VICA has meant for you and your business during COVID?

Send responses and headshot to Shauna Carter
shauna@vica.com
Media Mentions
Kroger Reacts to 'Hero Pay' by Closing Two Stores. Here's How You May be Affected
LA Times | February 3
2021 Government Handbook
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 cathy@vica.com or call (818) 817-0545.
ABOUT VICA
Presenting the business perspective on behalf of employers in the
San Fernando Valley cities of Los Angeles, Burbank, Glendale, Calabasas,
Hidden Hills, San Fernando and Santa Clarita.
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