Leaders Embrace Transportation Investments

Gary Toebben on September 6, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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More than 1,000 transportation, business and elected leaders are converging in Los Angeles today at Mobility 21's 10th Annual Southern California Transportation Summit to pledge their commitment to job creation for Southern California, by aggressively pursuing and delivering state and federal transportation investment to our region.

Leaders from seven counties will come together in support of the reauthorization of a long-overdue federal transportation bill and urge Congress to pass legislation to prevent the federal gas tax — 18 cents per gallon — from expiring at the end of September. The gasoline tax is the principle revenue source for federal transportation funding and if it vanishes, most of the federal funding for transportation will disappear.


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California has Game Plans for Winning New Jobs

Gary Toebben on August 30, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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This weekend we’ll celebrate Labor Day, traditionally the end of summer and the return of football and cool autumn temperatures. Fortunately, talk is finally heating up on a game plan to put California back on track toward a winning economy. Last week, Gov. Jerry Brown released a three-part California Jobs First Plan to spur companies to hire California workers. This is on the heels of Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom's Economic Growth and Competitiveness Agenda to lead California into the post-recession "Next Economy." With fears of an economic relapse on the horizon, the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce applauds both Gov. Brown and Lt. Gov. Newsom for putting plans on the chalkboard to make business investment and job creation the top priority for California lawmakers. arrowRead More

Put Out The Fire — Pass Legislation to Send Californians Back To Work

Gary Toebben on August 23, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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When part of our California landscape is burning, we send in the firefighters. The California dream is ablaze for millions of able men and women whose ability to support their families has gone up in smoke. The California Legislature will adjourn the 2011 legislative session on Friday, Sept. 9. Taking bold action in the next three weeks will not require more tax revenue, but it will require bipartisanship, political will and a relentless focus on passing laws that will encourage and enable the private sector to create new jobs for Californians. arrowRead More

Building for the Future

Jessica Duboff on August 23, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in Intersection L.A. 
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When the name of the Energy, Water & Environment Committee was changed to the Environmental Sustainability Council, the thought was to broaden the Chamber’s vision of how to promote economic growth through sustainable, pro-jobs energy and environmental policies.  In 2011, in addition to tackling the traditional topics of environmental regulations, energy supplies and reliable water sources, the Council partnered with Opportunity Green to design panels that creatively focus on where green and clean innovation is headed.

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Pennsylvania Congressman Talks Transportation

Jessica Duboff on August 17, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in Intersection L.A. 
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Last Friday, Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA), joined the Chamber, Mayor Villariagosa, Metro CEO Art Leahy, Metro Boardmember Richard Katz and Metrolink CEO John Fenton for a conversation on transportation authorization and America Fast Forward.  The Congressman, a senior member on the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and Chair of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials emphasized to Chamber members that “if we don’t make our infrastructure a priority, we are going to get left behind globally.”

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Let the Zoo Out of its Cage

Gary Toebben on August 16, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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Unlike most major U.S. cities, the Los Angeles Zoo is still tethered to a city government that will soon be unable to afford to feed the animals or the keepers. An effort to explore an opportunity to create a public/private partnership for our Zoo, by releasing a Request for Proposal (RFP) for an independent operator, passed in L.A. City Council last week. But we have a long way to go before progress is assured. arrowRead More

Framework for Downtown Stadium Deserves Support

Gary Toebben on August 8, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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For months the City of Los Angeles has been watching closely, with both fanfare and skepticism, as to whether or not an agreement for a downtown stadium and events center near the Staples Center could be worked out to the benefit of the City. With the release and public review of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the City of Los Angeles and Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), we now have an outline for a deal that reflects tough negotiations that protect Los Angeles taxpayers and offer the potential of a major economic stimulus for the City.arrowRead More

Finding a Middle Ground When Our Nation Needs It

Gary Toebben on August 2, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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The business community applauds the bi-partisan efforts of President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for the passage of legislation to raise the national debt ceiling and reduce the federal deficit. These leaders persevered to find the middle ground in a very contentious debate that had the nation wondering if it was still possible to compromise on any issue in Washington, D.C. arrowRead More

Axe the Gross Receipts Tax to Create Jobs and New Tax Revenue

Gary Toebben on July 26, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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The City of Los Angeles has the highest gross receipts tax rate of all 88 cities in L.A. County — a distinction that also puts it among the highest of any major city in the United States. This, coupled with the fact that technology now allows businesses to locate almost anywhere, has left the City struggling to attract and retain businesses, jobs and tax revenue.arrowRead More

Releasing the Brake to Move America Fast Forward

Gary Toebben on July 19, 2011 at 12:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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Congratulations to Caltrans and the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority on their success this weekend in taking down half of the Mulholland Drive bridge over the 405 Freeway in 17 fewer hours than originally scheduled. The engineers and construction crews in charge of this project made national news, earned our respect and saved the taxpayers' money. Now it's time to focus our collective attention on another big job, securing national support for dozens of other badly needed highway and transit projects in Los Angeles County.arrowRead More