VICA Weekly
Valley Industry & Commerce Association
Friday, January 21
In This Issue
  • Quote of the Week
  • First Advocacy Day of 2022
  • VICA Job Opening
  • Members
  • Looking for Interns!
  • Restaurant Beverage Program
  • Testifying at SFVCOG
  • Committee Recap
  • Upcoming Events
  • VICA in the News
  • Hot News
  • Member Messages
"It's huge when you got the fans behind you, making a lot of noise. It gets you amped up. You kind of start getting the fans into the game a little bit. It definitely was a great environment today with the fans. They did an awesome job making it loud for them and picking us up when we needed it."
Aaron Donald
Defense Tackle, LA Rams on their win against the Cardinals
VICA's First Advocacy Day of the New Year
The VICA delegation speaks to Assemblymember Laura Friedman at 2022's first Advocacy Day!
On Thursday, a delegation of VICA members and staff virtually "traveled" to Sacramento to speak with lawmakers at our first Advocacy Day of the new year. The group advocated for San Fernando Valley business interests and had productive conversations with elected representatives on bills currently moving through the legislative process. In total, VICA brought 6 issues to the attention of our lawmakers that will have various affects on doing business in the Valley.
Assemblymember Kelly Seyarto speaks to the VICA Advocacy Day delegation.
VICA met with Assemblymembers Phillip Chen, Vince Fong, Laura Friedman, Chris Holden, Tasha Horvath, Kevin McCarty, Freddie Rodriguez, Kelly Seyarto, and Thurston Smith.

If you weren't able to join us, click the links below to send letters to legislators and fight for the San Fernando Valley Business community.

  • Concerns About Additional Paid Sick Leave: VICA requests that our legislators oppose any paid sick leave policy that burdens our businesses and increases the cost of labor in California.
  • AB 1400 Single-Payer Health Care - OPPOSE: Presents an exceedingly costly state-run healthcare proposal that would cause the largest tax increase in state history.
  • AB 230 Flexible Work Scheduling - SUPPORT: Allows non-exempt employees to request a flexible work schedule without employer obligation to pay overtime compensation, a change imperative to our return to a new normal.
  • AB 365 Drayage Truck Tax Exemptions - SUPPORT: Unfortunately, AB 365 died in appropriations yesterday, but VICA will continue to advocate for tax exemptions to support transitions to more sustainable technologies.
  • SB 324 South Coast AQMD Board Membership - OPPOSE: While this bill has not yet been pulled from the inactive file, VICA is strongly opposed to the addition of two environmental justice appointee Board Members at South Coast AQMD.
  • Concerns Regarding Independent Contractors: VICA continues to express our concerns about AB 5 to our legislators, asking them to negotiate and introduce bills that will allow independent contractors to thrive in California.

We thank our elected officials for meeting with us, and we thank our members that virtually traveled with us for our January Advocacy Day!
VICA Thanks Our Renewing Members
All internships will be remote until further notice. For more information or to apply, please visit:

VICA Legislative Team Testifies in Favor of City's Restaurant Beverage Program
This week, VICA called into LA City's Planning and Land Use Meeting to speak in favor of the proposed Restaurant Beverage Program. This program will simplify the zoning approval for restaurants that wish to serve alcoholic beverages.

With the global outbreak of COVID-19, restaurant owners have shifted to take-out, grocery service, and to-go sales of beer, wine, and cocktails to stay afloat. The profit margin from alcohol sales has provided restaurateurs with some temporary relief during the pandemic. The proposed Restaurant Beverage Program will build on the City’s efforts to provide relief, offering long-term financial incentives designed to support jobs and businesses in Los Angeles.

The program shortens the time required for City approvals from months to weeks, helping restaurant owners get up and running faster once safer-at-home orders are lifted. The proposal would also reduce the cost of an alcohol permit from approximately $13,000 to approximately $4,000. Eligible restaurant owners would still be subject to operational standards as well as mandatory monitoring and inspections to ensure compliance.

The Planning and Land Use Committee has supported the program and will make its way to the full Council. VICA will continue to monitor the item.
Advocating for Effective Transit at the SFVCOG Meeting
On Thursday, VICA's legislative team called into the San Fernando Valley Council of Governments (SFVCOG) Board Meeting on Thursday to urge them to align with VICA and support the Sepulveda Transit Corridor. VICA's Transportation Committee has chosen to support alignments 3, 5, and 6 as effective plans for the Corridor because of their feasibility and connectivity, and our representatives expressed this to the Council. One critical reason that the committee chose to support 3, 5, and 6 is due to their inclusion of on-campus stations at UCLA. Direct access to the UCLA campus is critical to the campus community, the 2028 Olympics, and the financial viability of future Sepulveda Transit Corridor operations. Overall, for a transit system to be a competitive travel option that attracts new riders, there is a need to increase speed, frequency, capacity, and reliability, while providing convenient connections to existing and planned transit lines. VICA's transportation committee believes Options 3, 5, and 6 do just that, and we will continue to urge the community, and Metro, to support these alignments as they move forward with the Sepulveda Transit Corridor.
Committee Recap
Aviation Committee (1/18)
Sponsored by Aeroplex / Aerolease

  • Sharon Wagener, Legislative Director for Congresswoman Julia Brownley, gave a Federal Sustainable Aviation Fuel Initiatives Overview.
  • Leeor Alpern gave updates from World Energy.
  • Erin Cook of the San Francisco International Airport presented on Assembly Bill 1322 and airport Sustainable Aviation Fuel initiatives.
  • The Aviation Committee recommended that VICA support AB
  • 1322 (Rivas).
  • The Aviation Committee recommended that VICA support H.R. 8769 (Brownley).
  • Pamela Marcello gave updates on the Hollywood Burbank Airport.
Government Affairs Committee (1/19)

  • The committee heard a presentation from Lisa Maas of California Allied for Patient Protection on the 2022 Ballot Measure: Adjust Limitations on Medical Negligence Cases.
  • The Government Affairs committee recommended that VICA oppose the 2022 Ballot Measure: Adjust Limitations on Medical Negligence Cases.
  • Tim Shestek of the American Chemistry Council spoke on the 2022 Ballot Measure: State Regulations to Reduce Plastic Wastes.
  • The Government Affairs committee recommended that VICA oppose the 2022 Ballot Measure: State Regulations to Reduce Plastic Wastes.
  • Vartan Djihanian of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce gave a Federal Legislative Update.
  • The committee heard from Special Guest Assemblywoman Suzette Valladares about her goals and plans for 2022.
VICA's Congressional Breakfast
Friday, February 25
IN PERSON at the Hilton Universal

Join VICA in a unique and fun setting to directly engage elected officials from Washington who represent the San Fernando Valley.
Save the Date
Labor & Employment Committee
Wednesday, February 2
8 to 10 a.m.
Virtual Meeting
Education Committee
Thursday, February 3
8:30 to 10 a.m.
Virtual Meeting
VICA Congressional Breakfast
Friday, February 25th
8:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Live Event: The Hilton Universal
VICA In the News
Hot News
California Unemployment
A big increase in California workers filing initial claims for unemployment was reported last week, with 67,500 first-time jobless claims in the week ending on January 15, a 6,100 increase from the week before.

A bottle of wine could cost $5 more this year, due to a glass crisis that has sent the price of bottles shooting up. Paired with increased packaging costs and inflation, many winemakers fear they will have to raise prices for consumers.

Almost a quarter of Los Angeles Unified students were not in class this week, with student attendance at 72.5% on Tuesday. The absentee rate is down from last week, though, when about a third of students were out each day on average.
Bullet Train
The California High-Speed Rail Authority approved a route plan on Thursday, certifying environmental documents establishing the project's future path from Burbank to downtown Los Angeles' Union Station.

Out Sick
The latest surge of COVID-19 cases powered by the new variant has caused extremely high numbers of employees to miss work because of illness. Between 12/29 and 1/10, approximately 8.8 million workers called in sick, nearly triple the levels from the first half of December.

The California State University system has added caste as a protected category in its systemwide anti-discrimination policy, a policy deeply meaningful to Dalit students of South Asian decent.
Member Spotlight
Kathleen Sterling
Valley News Group

Kathleen Sterling received her MBA at UCLA Graduate School of Management in International Marketing, but halfway through decided she should start a newspaper instead of work in Paris!

When asked some additional questions, the below was shared:

What has been your largest accomplishment or efforts made over the past year? 
Valley News Group's biggest accomplishment during the pandemic was expanding our digital footprint so that we never missed an issue, and it actually increased our readership online. We had to pivot more to digital when so many retailers shut down.

How has VICA supported your business strategy or expanded your footprint with the business community?  
VICA has let me meet with business leaders from across the valley I wouldn't normally meet in my day-to-day business dealings in the west valley, opening up the papers to more news and editorial input and a broader ad base.
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 Shauna Carter
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.
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.