The Measles Outbreak is a Big Story. This One's Bigger.

Dan Diamond, California Healthline Contributing Editor on February 11, 2015 at 10:00:00 am in Health Care Waiting Room 
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In the past 10 days, one health care story went viral: the Disneyland-centered measles outbreak. It's an important story. More than 100 Americans are infected; thousands more have been exposed. But it's probably not the most important story in health care this month. The only problem is -- which one is?

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Taft-Hartley Act an Option for Ports Labor Dispute

Gary Toebben on February 10, 2015 at 9:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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For nine months, negotiators for the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) have been unsuccessful in crafting a labor agreement to replace the contract that ended on July 1, 2014.  The PMA represents the shippers that use the West Coast ports of the United States to import and export products. The ILWU represents 20,000 longshoremen that work the ports. 

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City of L.A. To Reduce Top Rate of Gross Receipts Tax

Gary Toebben on February 3, 2015 at 7:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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Today, the Los Angeles City Council will vote to reduce the top rate of the City’s Gross Receipts Tax. The action will lower the top rate from $5.07 per $1,000 in gross receipts to $4.75 on Jan. 1, 2016, $4.50 on Jan. 1, 2017 and $4.25 on Jan. 1, 2018.  The proposal was developed by Mayor Eric Garcetti, City Council President Herb Wesson and Budget Committee Chair Paul Krekorian. 

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Medicaid Expansion a Big Leap Forward for People Experiencing Homelessness

John Connolly - Insure the Uninsured Project on January 28, 2015 at 10:00:00 am in Health Care Waiting Room 
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A recent report from researchers at the Kaiser Family Foundation and the National Health Care for the Homeless Council examined the experiences of four clinics for people experiencing homelessness in the wake of the Medicaid expansion in 2014. Each of the clinics was in a different state; three were in states that expanded Medicaid, and one was not. Unsurprisingly, the researchers found that many of the clinics’ previously uninsured patients and clients who are homeless have gained health coverage though Medicaid. New health coverage has made a substantial difference in individuals’ access to care, particularly in their ability to get timely, needed treatments. Not only can individuals get more regular access to services, they can now have important, life-saving surgeries that they delayed, and fill prescriptions—with ongoing, regular access to these medications—that they previously could not. These newly available treatments have been virtually indispensible for controlling many individuals’ behavioral health conditions.

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Celebrating Business and Special Olympics World Games

Gary Toebben on January 27, 2015 at 7:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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This Thursday, Jan. 29, more than 1,500 Chamber members and guests will celebrate business leadership in the City and County of Los Angeles at the Chamber’s Inaugural Dinner, presented by Bank of America. As part of the program, we will highlight the 7,000 athletes that will visit L.A. this summer for the Special Olympics World Games that will begin on July 25 at the Coliseum. 

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Playa Vista ó A Lesson in Leadership and Perseverance

Gary Toebben on January 20, 2015 at 9:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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This past week, Mayor Eric Garcetti and the City of Los Angeles celebrated the news that Yahoo! Inc. signed a long-term lease at the Collective Campus in Playa Vista. Playa Vista has emerged as a national model for urban living and high tech jobs, but turning back the clock, Playa Vista almost never happened.     

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Time is Running out for the Children's Health Insurance Program

Samantha Beasley, Health Care Policy Manager, L.A. Area Chamber on January 14, 2015 at 10:00:00 am in Health Care Waiting Room 
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 The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) was passed into law in 1997 in order to provide health coverage to children (and pregnant women in some states) who belonged to families that didn’t qualify for Medicaid but couldn’t afford to pay for private coverage. After the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA) was signed in 2009 by President Obama, health coverage for children was revitalized through increased state funding and additional programmatic options. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) then enhanced federal funding of CHIP by 23 percentage points, provided an additional $40 billion to promote Medicaid and CHIP enrollment, and authorized the program until 2019. Funding for CHIP however, runs out this year, and uncertainty about the future of this program has grown with the new leadership in the 114th Congress.

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Letís Move Forward on the Sale of Ontario International Airport

Gary Toebben on January 13, 2015 at 8:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce agrees with Mayor Garcetti that the City of Los Angeles should sell Ontario International Airport (ONT). The business community believes that there is no strategic reason for the City of L.A. to continue to own and operate ONT, as long as the City of Ontario, or some other appropriate entity, continues to operate the facility as a commercial service airport for our region.

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Happy New Year - Hereís What A Great 2015 Would Look Like

Gary Toebben on January 6, 2015 at 8:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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Most economists predict that 2015 will be a better year than 2014. That’s good, but my question is “What would make 2015 a great year for Los Angeles County?” What would dramatically contribute to the growth of our regional economy and cause a significant reduction in our unemployment rate?

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LAWA Gives Region A Christmas Present For The Decades

Gary Toebben on December 23, 2014 at 8:00:00 am in The Business Perspective 
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Last week the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners approved a $4 billion plan to dramatically transform LAX's ground transportation, and arrival and departure experience. The commissioners approved plans for a Landside Access Modernization Program that will include an automated LAX Train to connect passengers to the airline terminals from off site locations. 

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