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Top Local Stories To Watch In 2014 (In No Particular Order)

December 30, 2013 – The Business Journal reviews top newsmakers, news stories and photos of 2013, plus a look ahead to what local issues we’ll be watching closely in 2014.

•The city attorney is drafting an ordinance ensuring that workers at the convention center and airport receive wages aligning with Measure N, the living wage measure for hotel workers.

•The Boeing Co. is deciding where to locate work on its 777X commercial airliner in early 2014. Long Beach is in the running.

•Mercedes-Benz leased a one million square foot property formerly owned by Boeing last year. The company has yet to announce its development plans.

•The city manager is releasing a request for proposals for development of a new civic center to a short list of developers in 2014.

•Due to testing delays, it is unclear if the 10 zero emission buses Long Beach Transit ordered from the Chinese-based Build Your Dreams (BYD) will be ready by June, as planned

•Primary elections for state city council, mayor, city attorney and school boards take place in April, with runoffs in June. State and federal primary elections are also in June.

•A search firm has yet to be hired to find a new executive director for the Port of Long Beach. A request for proposals (RFP) to find a firm was issued December 6. The RFP deadline is January 6.

•Long Beach’s waterfront may be transformed by developments such as an outlet mall at the Pike at Rainbow Harbor, Shoreline Gateway and a new shopping center at the SeaPort Marina hotel’s location called The Shoppes at Second + PCH.

•An audit of port-related travel expenses by Long Beach Harbor Commissioners is scheduled for completion in late January or early February 2014.

•The Long Beach Fire Department is working to get its rapid medic deployment pilot program approved under the guidelines established by the Los Angeles Emergency Medical Services Commission.

•Medical marijuana dispensary regulations are to be drafted and submitted to the Long Beach Planning Commission for review. Concurrently, the city attorney’s office has been directed to prepare a ballot measure for the April 2014 primary election to establish a tax on medical marijuana businesses.