April 19, 2019

In This Issue
"The status quo isn't working, and it's not helpful to ask for an exemption for L.A. or any other city. We're one state, and when it comes to fixing our housing problem we're all in this together. "
- State Senator Scott Wiener

Media Mention 
Elizabeth Hawley Discusses Independent Contractor Laws
Spectrum News 1
April 15

Developing the Future
Business Life
April 15

L.A. School Parcel Tax Fight Will Be a Trendsetter
Fox & Hounds
April 16


VICA Thanks Our Renewing Members







California Grocers Association

Greenberg & Bass

History for Hire

Jeffer, Mangels, Butler & Mitchell

Lainer Investments

Prime Strategies of California

Six Flags Magic Mountain

VICA Welcomes Its New Member

Holland & Knight


Save The Date

Newsmaker Connection Council District 12 Election Forum
Tuesday, April 30
7:30 to 9:30 a.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys
Click here to RSVP

Labor & Employment Committee
Hosted by Sun Hill Properties / Hilton Universal City
Wednesday, May 1
8:30 to 10:00 a.m.
Hilton Universal City
555 Universal Hollywood Drive, Universal City
Click here to RSVP

Education Committee
Thursday, May 2
8:30 to 10:00 a.m. 
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys 
Click here to RSVP

Leaders Forum with Los Angeles Rams COO Kevin Demoff
Thursday, May 2
11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The Garland
4222 Vineland Ave., North Hollywood
Click here to RSVP

Energy, Environment & Utilities Committee
Sponsored by Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
Thursday, May 9
Noon to 1:30 p.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys
Click here to RSVP

Joint Transportation - Land Use Committee
Hosted by The Garland
Tuesday, May 14
8:00 to 10:00 a.m.
The Garland
4222 Vineland Ave., North Hollywood
Click here to RSVP

Government Affairs Committee
Hosted by Penny Lane Centers
Wednesday, May 15
8:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Penny Lane Centers
15314 Rayen Street, North Hills
Click here to RSVP

Hot Issues 

Governor Newsom announced that he would  not block construction in high fire areas. Instead, Newsom suggested that local governments de-emphasize building in high-risk areas around forests and urged debate about how Californians can build smarter.

Universal Income
The City of Stockton has launched a pilot program to provide a universal income of $500 to 130 select residents. The first payments were received in February.

Movie Business
VICA member Warner Bros. announced plans to expand its Burbank headquarters by acquiring Burbank Studios and moving into two new office towers. The studio owned the property before selling it in 1951.

On Tuesday, the Los Angeles City Council voted to oppose VICA-supported SB 50, which would allow developers to build housing projects near transit. Last year, the Council opposed a similar bill, SB 827, which VICA supported as well.

Warner Center
Plans for the Westfield Promenade 2035 took a significant step forward this week with the publication of the final environmental impact report for the project. VICA will be at the public hearing on April 30, to voice our continued support for the project.

Help Stop New Property Tax on Homes and Businesses
Measure EE, LAUSD's proposed property tax, would assess a tax of 16-cents per square foot on all properties, which is in addition to an existing 12-cent per square foot property tax already levied by the district, and statewide tax increases dedicated to schools passed by voters in 2012 and 2016. LAUSD already spends more than $7.5 billion a year, yet the district is so badly mismanaged that money hasn't led to any significant improvements in classrooms or test results. Real reforms are needed at the district. However, no reforms are included in Measure EE, just a demand by district bureaucrats and defenders of the failed status quo that taxpayers bail out a school district with a history of red ink, appalling education results, declining enrollment, runaway administrative hiring and exploding retirement and health care costs.

Click here to join the coalition against Measure EE
VICA-Sponsored Bill Will Spur Housing Development in the Valley
VICA is proud to sponsor Assembly Bill 1560 by local Assemblymember Laura Friedman and principal co-author Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel, which would bring more homes along Metro's Orange Line by amending the definition of Major Transit Stop. The existing definition excludes parts of California served by Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), but not served by rail. This means that the Valley and other communities across the state cannot take advantage of CEQA exemptions and incentive programs offered to affordable housing projects built within a 1/2 mile of a Major Transit Stop. The Orange Line is one of the busiest BRT lines in Los Angeles County. It is essential that areas surrounding the Orange Line are eligible for incentives and CEQA exemptions to ensure housing development is maximized near transit. AB 1560 will maximize housing development near transit throughout California where housing is ideal, but been excluded under existing definitions. 

AB 1560 will be heard by the Assembly Natural Resources Committee on April 22 and VICA President Stuart Waldman will be testifying. 

Make sure your voice is heard in Sacramento: click here to send a letter supporting AB 1560
Regional Planning Commission to Consider Harmful New Housing Fee
Next week, the Los Angeles County Regional Planning Commission will consider a proposal to add a one percent fee on developments in unincorporated areas of the county, including residential developments with five or more units. This fee will exacerbate the housing crisis when most agencies are trying to make housing less expensive to build. The revenue raised would be used for a poorly-defined list of arts projects. Developers would have the option to provide an on-site art installation but community benefits such as innovative architecture or attractive landscaping would not count towards the art fee. VICA will be at the hearing on Wednesday at 9 a.m. to urge the commissioners not to adopt this harmful proposal.

For more information, email Elizabeth@vica.com

Tuesday, April 30, 2019
7:30 - 9:30 a.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170,
Van Nuys

Council District 12 Special Election Forum

Join VICA for a special Newsmaker Connection as candidates for Council District 12 gather to discuss issues affecting businesses across the San Fernando Valley. This special Election Forum will provide members with the unique opportunity to meet, listen and speak with the CD 12 contenders.

Confirmed Speakers
(as of 4/19/19)

Scott Abrams Jeff Daar John Lee Loraine Lundquist
Josh Yeager
This event offers attendees the opportunity to ask questions and receive immediate responses from our candidates.

Breakfast is included. The event is free for VICA members. Non-members interested in attending, please contact  Helene  at the VICA Office.

Last chance to register is Friday, April 26.

Click here to register
Oppose Harmful Rent Control Policy
VICA opposes Assembly Bill 36 (Bloom), which would make significant changes to the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act by limiting its protections against rent control. AB 36 would allow the imposition of rent control on a property 10 years or older and on single-family homes if the landlord owns more than two units. This would make it financially infeasible for developers to build new housing of any kind, exacerbating our current housing crisis. Policy should continue to minimize rent control and instead incentivize the building of affordable housing. Meaningful progress can be made in lessening the housing crisis, but limiting Costa-Hawkins protections to properties less than 10 years old will breathe new life into California rent control, halting development and failing to provide affordable housing.

Click here to send a letter opposing AB 36

Thursday, May 2, 2019
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
 The Garland
4222 Vineland Ave., 
North Hollywood

Kevin Demoff
Executive Vice President of Football Operations and Chief Operating Officer of the Los Angeles Rams 
On May 2, Kevin Demoff, Executive Vice President of Football Operations and Chief Operating Officer of the  Los Angeles Rams , will discuss last year's NFC Champions, the 
Los Angeles Rams. Demoff will take time to answer members' questions and give an overview of last season, next season, and the new stadium.

Co-sponsored by BYD America

Sponsorships are still available - email Helene@vica.com or call the 
VICA Office at (818) 817-0545

Last chance to register is Friday, April 26.

Click here to RSVP
Revenue Enhancement Committee
Do you have ideas to help VICA find new revenue to support expanded advocacy efforts in the Valley and across the state? VICA is looking for volunteers to participate as members of our Revenue Enhancement Committee. If you have the skills and the interest to serve on this committee, contact Cathy@vica.com.

To participate on the Revenue Enhancement Committee, click here.
Oppose Targeted Attacks on Charter Schools
VICA opposes Assembly Bills 1505 (O'Donnell), 1506 (McCarty/O'Donnell) and 1508 (Bonta), as well as Senate Bill 756 (Durazo), which would place new and unnecessary barriers to charter schools' success. VICA supports quality charter schools that foster innovation and improve academic achievement for their pupils. High performing charters are a vital part of our public education system and provide quality school options for students and their families.

AB 1505 would eliminate charter school appeals and allow school districts broad discretion to deny a new or renewing charter school. AB 1506 would impose a cap on new charter schools, and AB 1508 would allow school districts to deny charter petitions based on the impact of new charter schools on the rest of the district. SB 756 would impose an outright moratorium on new charter schools. 

Charter schools were designed to provide innovative, high-quality education for students across California. All California charter schools are non-profit, and they serve some of the most underserved communities in the state.  Allowing school districts to subjectively target charter schools, is unfair to high performing schools and the students they serve.

Click to send letters opposing AB 1505, AB 1506AB 1508 and SB 756
Member Spotlight
Gaspar Insurance Services is a full service insurance agency specializing in helping business owners lower workers compensation costs and reducing employment related lawsuits. Gaspar Insurance is also one of the leading firms in Southern California for cyber, general liability and other insurances.

How is VICA valuable to Gaspar Insurance Services?

We are thrilled to be part of an organization that fights for us! We are not shy about voicing our concerns with regards to California laws that are unfair to California business owners. Being part of VICA gives us a voice to address these issues and be part of something larger.

Click here to learn more about Gaspar Insurance Services
Support Increased Funding for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental  Disabilities
VICA  supports increased across-the-board funding and comprehensive rate restructuring to support Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). However, VICA has concerns regarding stakeholder input and the elimination of service categories under the recently published rate study. The rate study needs to be carefully studied to ensure that the new funding model is sustainable. It is imperative that the legislature and community stakeholders vet the key cost assumptions in the rate proposal to avoid unintended negative consequences. For example, the new rate study's cost assumptions do not account for the increased labor costs in cities like Los Angeles. This insufficient assumption would make it difficult for local regional centers to recruit, train, deploy, support, and manage a stable workforce and provide services. 

While service providers and community stakeholders are vetting the rate study, California must fund the services and supports people with IDD rely on every day. An immediate 8 percent across-the-board rate increase will allow organizations to continue serving adults with IDD while the long-term funding model and rate study are considered.

Click here to send a letter to support funding for IDD service providers
Committee Report

Government Affairs Committee (04/17)
Hosted by Penny Lane Centers
  • Karen Swift from Metro gave an update on Metro Projects and Measure M funding, including the Orange Line BRT Improvements, North San Fernando Valley BRT Improvements, North Hollywood to Pasadena Corridor BRT, East San Fernando Valley Transit Corridor - Van Nuys Blvd., and the Sepulveda Transit Corridor.
  • The committee discussed the potential impacts of the proposed L.A. City restrictive scheduling ordinance.
  • The committee recommended to oppose AB 1162 (Kalra), AB 1066 (Gonzalez) and AB 177 (Low).

Join Boys & Girls Club of the West Valley's Chair Jessica Yasukochi (VICA) as her guest. To RSVP please contact jessica@vica.com

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 Helene@vica.com  or 
call (818) 817-0545.