January 25, 2019

In This Issue
"This is the eradication of congestion. This is sending out a message to the world that Los Angeles County is doing something about its traffic ."

- Metro Chief Executive Officer Phil Washington discussing congestion based pricing.
Media Mentions

San Fernando Valley Business Group Urges UTLA Leaders to End the Teacher Strike
Los Angeles Daily News
January 21


VICA Thanks Our Renewing Members




_________ _________

Gaspar Insurance Services

VICA Welcomes Our New Member

EH Realty

Firstmed Ambulance Services

The Week Ahead

Ambassador Committee
Tuesday, Jan. 29
8:30 to 10:00 a.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys
Click here to RSVP

Save The Date

Labor & Employment Committee
Hosted by Hilton Universal City
Wednesday, Feb. 6
8:30 to 10:00 a.m.
Hilton Universal City
555 Universal Hollywood Drive, Universal City
Click here to RSVP

Education Committee
Thursday, Feb. 7
8:30 to 10:00 a.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys
Click here to RSVP
Host or sponsor this committee by clicking here

Land Use Committee
Hosted by The Garland
Tuesday, Feb. 12
8:00 to 10:00 a.m.
The Garland
4222 Vineland Ave., North Hollywood
Click here to RSVP

Sacramento Advocacy Day
Wednesday, Feb. 13
Click here to RSVP

Energy Environment & Utilities Committee
Sponsored by Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
Thursday, Feb. 14
12:00 to 1:30 p.m.
VICA Office
16600 Sherman Way, Suite 170, Van Nuys
Click here to RSVP

Government Affairs Committee
Hosted by Penny Lane
Wednesday, Feb. 20
8:30 to 10:00 a.m.
Penny Lane 
Witherbee Hall
15314 Rayen Street, North Hills
Click  here to RSVP

State Officeholders Dinner
Presented by Comcast NBCUniversal
Friday, Feb. 22
5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Sound Stage 29 Universal Studios Hollywood
100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City
Click here to RSVP

Hot Issues 

VICA's Vice President Jessica Yasukochi is now Chair of the Board of the Boys & Girls Club of the West Valley.

Congestion Pricing
Metro is pushing to study how congestion pricing would work in Los Angeles. The study would examine options such as converting carpool lanes to toll lanes, taxing drivers based on the number of miles they travel, or charging a fee to enter certain neighborhoods. It will be revisited by the Metro Board next month.

The Los Angeles teachers union ended its strike Tuesday night based on overwhelming support for a contract agreement with LAUSD. Last week, VICA sent a letter to UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl urging union leadership to return to the bargaining table.  Teachers returned to the classroom on Wednesday. 

The future of more than 1,300 transit-friendly apartments or condos, including 214 affordable units, is up in the air after officials discovered that the projects are planned for sites with competing CRA/LA land use plans that contain land-use limitations that could halt dense transit oriented communities.

Under the new tax laws,  landlords who meet certain criteria are eligible to deduct 20% of real estate rental profits before calculating taxes.

On Tuesday night, Los Angeles kicked off the annual homeless count. The count helps determine how money is dispersed throughout the region, including the revenue generated from Measure H.

Switching Parties
San Diego Assemblymember Brian Maienschein announced that he has left the California Republican Party and re-registered as a Democrat this Thursday. The move shrinks an already dwindling GOP influence in Sacramento.

VICA Fights for Valley Businesses in Sacramento
David Meza (Southern California Gas Company), Jim Garrison (Pacific Federal, LLC), Assemblymember Robert Rivas, Jacque McMillan (Metropolitan Water District of Southern California), David Gonzalez (Association of Independent Commercial Producers), VICA President Stuart Waldman, Ross Pendergraft (Leavitt Group)

This week, VICA met with legislators and staff to discuss important legislation and business policy priorities during our first Sacramento trip of 2019. 

The VICA delegation met with Assemblymembers Laura Friedman, Vince Fong, Robert Rivas and Jesse Gabriel as well as senior staff for Assemblymembers, Eduardo Garcia, Luz Rivas, Heath Flora and Senator Jeff Stone. The delegation focused on supporting bills that will increase access to computer science education; clarify the definition of of an independent contractor; spur housing development; secure a reliable water supply; and allow local governments flexibility on nightlife. 

VICA will return to Sacramento on February 13. Be sure to RSVP and make your voice heard in Sacramento!
Click here to RSVP for the next Sacramento trip on February 13.
Spotlight on VICA Committee Leadership
David Gershwin, co-chair of VICA's Government Affairs Committee, runs David Gershwin Consulting, which was founded in 2010 and focuses on lobbying, public relations, and crisis communications. After serving for years as a senior advisor to elected officials at the state and local government level, including work as Chief of Staff to then-L.A. City Council President Eric Garcetti, Gershwin joined the private sector to provide public affairs services to companies, organizations, and non-profits. He especially enjoys providing clients with expertise they couldn't receive elsewhere, and getting them positive results - whether it's winning a legislative victory, garnering positive media coverage, or helping them get out of a PR jam.

How is VICA valuable to you or your business?
VICA provides tremendous value to its members by being on top of legislative issues - not just by tracking them, but by being a strong voice and an effective advocate for the San Fernando Valley's business community. To me and my business, being a part of a business organization with that type of clout is invaluable. Moreover, VICA's Elected Officeholder luncheons and dinners give me and our entire membership the opportunity to hear from leaders at every level of government - and we also ensure those same leaders hear from VICA members with tough questions on business issues that are so vital to our region. Additionally, I find the VICA After Dark events to be great opportunities to meet policymakers and business leaders in a more informal setting.

Why should prospective members consider becoming more involved with the Government Affairs committee?
VICA's Government Affairs Committee is unique in that we aren't limited to a specific policy area in terms of our scope. We also represent a great cross-section of business interests. Our committee's discussions and policy positions include perspectives from large companies (including those in the health care, communications, and manufacturing sector) as well as food service providers, trade associations, non-profit leaders, and small business owners. In short: if you have a business or organization of any kind, we've got a seat for you at VICA's Government Affairs Committee.

The Government Affairs Committee's next meeting is on February 20.
Learn more about VICA committees by clicking here.

Access D.C.

Monday, March 11th - Wednesday, March 13th

Join more than 200 civic and business leaders for the region's premier advocacy trip to the nation's capitol. Attendees will meet with members of Congress and senior Administration officials on priorities important to Southern California.

Register with VICA for an extra day of meetings and a private lunch in the Members' Dining Room with Representative Brad Sherman.

This trip is in conjunction with the Greater Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce and other business groups.

Early Bird registration fee: $850 (before February 8)
Registration fee after February 8: $950

Click here to reserve your spot for Access D.C.
VICA Recommends Guiding Principles for Redevelopment Agencies
Prior to their dissolution in 2011, redevelopment agencies (RDAs) used tax-incremented financing to revitalize blighted areas, produce affordable housing, and create new jobs. VICA believes that the reestablishment of some aspects of RDAs could be used to provide a new source of funding to accelerate the development of low- to moderate-income housing.

The VICA Board adopted guiding principles in support of reestablishment of certain aspects of RDAs that drive investment in local communities. In the past, redevelopment funds were misused by municipalities that declared areas 'blighted' to gain access to additional funds for projects that did not revitalize communities. VICA supports implementing safeguards and a transparent process to ensure this does not occur again. VICA supports a strong focus on local hiring and keeping power at the local level through local stakeholder input.

To learn more, email Elizabeth@vica.com
Oppose SCAQMD's Ban on Modified Hydrofluoric Acid
The South Coast Air Quality Management District Refinery Committee is considering banning oil refineries' use of  Modified Hydroflouric Acid (MHF) with Proposed Rule 1410, which would  cost thousands of jobs and increase gasoline prices by an estimated 26 cents per gallon .   PR 1410 should focus on enhancing and implementing safety measures through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which would allow mitigation concepts to be designed for each refinery   impacted by PR 1410.

Banning MHF is unnecessary and will cost thousands of jobs in Southern California. Let SCAQMD know that you oppose this ban or any such phase-out and recommend they move forward with a MOU to implement and enhance safety measures. 

Provide public comment at the upcoming SCAQMD Board meeting:

WHEN: Friday, February 1, 2019 at 9 a.m.
WHERE: SCAQMD Auditorium,  21865 Copley Dr.,  Diamond Bar, CA 91765
For more information, email Armando@vica.com

February 22, 2019
5:30 - 8:30 p.m. 
Universal Studios Hollywood,
Sound Stage 29

VICA invites you to dinner with your state lawmakers!
VICA provides a rare opportunity for Valley business leaders to connect with state lawmakers and have a fun time during its annual State Officeholders Dinner. 

Confirmed Speakers as of 1/25/19:

Senators :
Ben Allen
Steven Bradford
Bob Hertzberg
Holly Mitchell

Assemblymembers :
Laura Friedman
Tim Grayson
Reggie Jones-Sawyer
Sydney Kamlager-Dove
Luz Rivas
Miguel Santiago

Statewide Elected Officials :
Controller Betty Yee
Member of the Board of Equalization Mike Schaefer

Click here to RSVP
VICA Joins 650 Business Organizations Urging End to Government Shutdown
This week, VICA joined 645 business organizations urging the President and Members of Congress to immediately take steps to restore full operation of the federal government. The signatories represented business sectors and industries from all 50 states and reflected the growing concern about the economic impact of the partial shutdown. 

Click here to view the letter.

The  Child Care Resource Center  IDEAL Conference 2019 is the ultimate experience for small business owners and non-profit professionals in the San Fernando Valley! Attendees will: discover new and proven strategies of methodization that will transform their work, hear from many inspiring speakers including Shiza Shahid, Co-Founder of the Malala Fund & Founder of NOW Ventures, and choose from over 24 break-out sessions in leadership, marketing and technology! Register for this inaugural conference April 3-4. Register at www.theidealconference.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.