|Presenting Sponsor David Pryor (Anthem Blue Cross) and County Supervisor Kathryn Barger.
On Thursday, Chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Kathryn Barger, joined VICA members for a Virtual Leaders Forum. After participants conversed during the networking portion of the event, Supervisor Barger gave an overview of the Board's continued response to the COVID-19 crisis and plans to support Los Angeles County's economic recovery. She touted the business community's ability to quickly adapt and comply with health orders, citing a 97 percent compliance rate from local restaurants. According to Supervisor Barger, Los Angeles County continues to work closely with state and federal government partners to increase testing capacity and improve the County's contact tracing abilities. "The key to reopening was creating the Economic Resiliency Task Force, which I chaired," Supervisor Barger said about the group formed between the Board of Supervisors and local business leaders for developing strategies to strengthen Los Angeles' economy during these unprecedented times.
With the school year approaching, many attendees were interested in hearing the County's plans for reopening schools. "Closures impact the well-being of students and parents who are unable to go back to work," said Supervisor Barger. She added that the County is working with state partners to provide support and resources for students who are distance learning. While the Board is currently waiting for finalized state guidelines regarding waivers for school reopenings, Supervisor Barger noted that the County will consider infection hotspots when providing these waivers.
Supervisor Barger spoke frankly about the County's financial situation, describing a $935 million budget gap for the fiscal years 2020 and 2021, necessitating deep budget cuts. The Supervisor spoke about the need for cities to determine their own eviction moratoriums, instead of a Countywide moratorium, to prevent contradictions and give municipalities flexibility to address their unique situations. Barger also emphasized the importance of long term planning. She noted the County's ongoing advantages in having a diverse and innovative local economy, as well as the major, upcoming sporting events such as the 2028 Olympics coming to Los Angeles.
Thank you to Presenting Sponsors
Anthem Blue Cross
, and to our co-sponsor