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BizBrief: Today’s News To Know

Report: Ballot Initiative Would Cost Local Hotels, City

Measure WW, a November 6 ballot initiative that would require hotels with more than 50 rooms to create safety provisions and workload restrictions for employees, would create financial difficulties for the Long Beach hotel industry if passed, according to a reportcommissioned by the Long Beach City Council. BAE Urban Economics’ report noted new workload caps would reduce the number of rooms workers could clean each day to 10, a reduction of four rooms. Potential cost impacts range from $535 to $2,417 per room. The change would require smaller hotels with 100 rooms or fewer to increase staffing by as much as 31%, and larger hotels to do so by as much as 20%, according to the report. Impacts to the city could include reduced transient occupancy tax (a tax charged for hotel room night stays) and sales tax receipts.

Tonight: Community Forum About New Mail-in Ballot And Voting Initiative

The offices of the Long Beach City Clerk and the Los Angeles Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk are hosting a community forum tonight, 5 p.m., City Hall Council Chambers. Community members are invited to learn about Los Angeles County’s new vote by mail ballot and Voting Solutions for All People (VSAP) initiative for the upcoming November 6 election, as well as future elections.

Port Of Los Angeles Breaks September Record For Container Volumes

This year, the Port of Los Angeles experienced its best September in its 111-year history, processing a record 801,264 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) of cargo. Total, cargo volumes increased by 4.9% compared to the same month in 2017. Exports increased by 14.5%, imports increased by 6.6%, and the shipment of empty containers overseas decreased 2.7%. September marked the third month in a row that the port handled more than 800,000 TEUs. So far this year, overall cargo volumes have decreased by 1.75%. compared to 2017, when the port set its all-time record for trade volumes. In a prepared statement, POLA Executive Director Gene Seroka indicated that strong cargo volumes were tied to businesses importing seasonal inventories in advance of the holidays, and manufacturers bringing in more supplies in advance of tariffs going into effect.

PierPass 2.0 To Launch November 19

A revamped OffPeak program – the program governing terminal gate hours at the San Pedro Bay ports – is expected to go into effect on November 19. The program, known as PierPass 2.0, had originally been planned for a late summer rollout, but was held up by the Federal Maritime Commission’s (FMC) review of the proposed changes. The OffPeak program, operated by the nonprofit organization PierPass, is meant to mitigate truck traffic by implementing a system of fees to encourage trucks to visit terminals during “off peak,” or less busy, hours. The 12 terminals operators that are signatories to the program have agreed to changes including trucking appointment systems (which nine already use) as well as a reduced traffic mitigation fee. The current fee of $72.09 to move one twenty-foot equivalent unit container is being reduced to a flat fee of $31.52, while the rate for other container sizes is now $63.04. The flat fees are being instituted to prevent congestion currently caused when trucks line up to take advantage of lower OffPeak fees.

Long Beach Opera Announces New Executive Director and CEO

The Long Beach Opera has announced Jennifer Rivera as their new Executive Director and CEO. Rivera joined the Long Beach Opera in early 2017 as director of development and major gifts officer. A graduate of The Juilliard School in New York and Grammy Award nominee, Rivera specializes in baroque and contemporary repertoire. Some of her accomplishments thus far at the Long Beach Opera include raising over $100,000 in grants and implementing a $1.5 million campaign that is already one-third of the way toward its goal. “I am honored to shepherd Long Beach Opera into the next era of growth and to find new avenues for innovation and artistic excellence,” Rivera stated.

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