Hotel Worker Ordinance And Charter Amendments To Appear On November Ballot

At last night’s meeting, the Long Beach City Council voted to place an ordinance creating workload restrictions and safety measures for local hotel employees on the November ballot. Councilmembers also requested an economic impact study on the ordinance to be completed within 30 days. If passed by voters, the proposed initiative would require hotels with 50 or more rooms to provide employees with panic buttons. It would also limit workloads and the amount of overtime assigned without written consent. Unionized hotels would qualify to receive an exemption.


The council also voted to place four out of five proposed amendments to the Long Beach City Charter on the November ballot. The amendments would: 1) allow the mayor and city councilmembers to serve three terms instead of two and eliminate what’s known as the “term limits loophole” for write-in candidates; 2) create a citizens’ redistricting commission to rework the council districts every 10 years; 3) allow the city auditor to conduct performance reviews of any city department, board or commission; and 4) create an ethics commission of residents to make sure government officials are behaving in accordance to the city’s ethics laws. The council voted to revisit a proposed charter amendment to consolidate the water and gas departments under a single utilities commission. To learn more about these initiatives, read the August 14 edition of the Business Journal.


California Housing Affordability Falls To 10-Year Low

The number of households able to afford a median-priced home in California dropped from 31% in the first quarter to 26% in the second, a 10-year low for housing affordability, the California Association of Realtors announced today. The median price of a home in the state is $596,730, which requires a minimum annual income of $126,490 to make monthly payments at a 4.7% interest rate, the association stated. Thirty-six percent of home buyers could afford the $477,790 median-priced condominium or townhome, which requires an annual household income of $101,207. Affordability declined in Los Angeles County from 28% to 26%.


Local Contractors And Businesses Call For Legislator Action

Long Beach and Los Angeles area independent contractors and businesses are urging legislators to suspend a court decision they say impacts the ability of freelancers and independent contractors to operate in California. In its April 30 decision on Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles, the California Supreme Court threw out a test used to determine whether workers should be classified as employees or as independent contractors, and instated new rules that are more likely to presume a worker is an employee. The I’m Independent Coalition claims the decision will take away the freedom of nearly two million Californians to choose to work as independent contractors. The Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, local businesses and freelancers are holding a press conference tomorrow to voice their opposition to the ruling and urge legislators to act.


City of Long Beach Fleet Receives National Rank In Performance

The City of Long Beach’s vehicle fleet was named sixth out of thousands of fleet operations nationwide at the 2018 Leading Fleets competition held by Government Fleet Magazine and the American Public Works Association. The award recognizes Long Beach’s leadership, competitiveness and efficiency in planning for the future, according to a city statement. The city’s fleet services bureau manages the operations of city vehicles, including police cars, fire trucks, boats, helicopters and street sweepers.