Business and Labor

VIEJAS CASINO & RESORT OPENS SECOND LUXURY HOTEL TOWER OCT. 30: FLYING WALLENDAS TO PERFORM

 

October 27, 2015 (Alpine)--Viejas Casino & Resort will be officially opening its second luxury hotel tower on Friday, October 30th. Thousands will be in attendance for the grand opening ceremony for the new five-story tower. Separated by the hotel pool area and the Park at Viejas––a designated space for concerts and special events––the new hotel tower stands near its partner, Viejas’ first hotel tower, which opened in spring of 2013.

RETIREES TO SEE PENSIONS SLASHED UNDER NEW LAW

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

Photo credit: John Vachon, Alabama truck driver, Library of Congress TRUCKING PAST

October 20, 2015 (Washington D.C.) – Congress has crumpled the security net for many retired union workers.  A controversial law passed last December allows multi-employer pension funds to cut benefits if the funds are projected to run out of money.  CNN reports that many of these funds, which cover over 10 million works, are in financial trouble.

One of the first to take advantage of the new law is the Central States Pension Fund, which has been teetering on insolvency and now wants to cut benefits as much as 60% for retirees  who are reliant on its pension payments—if the Treasury Department approves the deal.

The fund covers workers and retirees in over 1,500 companies ranging from truck drivers and construction workers to Disneyland employees.

2015 WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP WINNERS ANNOUNCED BY SAN DIEGO-EAST COUNTY CHAMBER

 

 

East County Magazine Editor and Founder Miriam Raftery is among those honored

Photo:  2015 WILL winners (from left to right): Elizabeth Smith Chavez, Erica Pinto, Wendy Urushima-Conn, Mara Fortin, Molly Nocon, Miriam Raftery. Not shown: Carey Guthrie, Shelly Zimmerman.

October 19, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) -- The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce has honored eight women with Women in Leadership Luncheon (WILL) awards.

Honorees included: Mara Fortin, Nothing Bundt Cakes; Carey Guthrie, Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors; Molly Nocon, Noah Homes; Erica Pinto, Jamul Indian Village; Miriam Raftery, East County Magazine; Elizabeth Smith Chavez, Smith Chavez Law; Wendy Urushima-Conn, Asian Business Association; Shelly Zimmerman, San Diego Police Department.

According to Leah McIvor, 2015 event chair, a record 41 nominees were considered by the committee for the awards program, now in its 13th year. She said the recipients were honored for their outstanding leadership, exemplary character and integrity in the community, as well as their efforts to empower women to succeed and prosper in life and business.

COUNTRY MUSIC STAR BRENT PAYNE LIGHTS THE NIGHT, WINS NEW FANS AT FALL FEST IN LA MESA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 19, 2015 (La Mesa) – Award-winning country music star Brent Payne charmed the audience with a sizzling hot performance at the first La Mesa Fall Fest Saturday night in the parking lot at Grossmont Center, hosted by the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce.  It wasn’t hard to see why this self-proclaimed “country cowboy and southern gentleman” has rocketed to the top of the charts internationally and won fans in performances from Vegas to NASCAR to the National Rodeo Finals.

WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP LUNCHEON OCTOBER 16

October 10, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) -- The East County Chamber of Commerce Annual Women in Leadership Luncheon will observe its 13th anniversary at Mission Valley’s Town and Country Resort Hotel on Friday, October 16th from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  The luncheon honors San Diego County women, recognized by their peers as exemplary leaders. East County Magazine Editor Miriam Raftery is among the nominees.

Women will be honored in seven fields: Arts/Media/Culture; Business; Education/Academia; Hospitality; Government/Defense; Healthcare, and the Non-profit Sector. Nominees must be San Diego County residents and have demonstrated exemplary character, integrity and outstanding leadership, not only in their field, but in their community.

GOVERNOR BROWN SIGNS BILL THAT SEEKS TO ERADICATE WAGE GAP WITH SIGNING OF NEW LAW

 

"I have two daughters...The thought that their gender could be held against their abilities is outrageous." - Senator Joel Anderson, speaking in favor of the bill on the State Senate floor

By Liz Alper

October 7, 2015 (Sacramento)- A new era is beginning for working women in California.

On Tuesday, Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation into effect that gives women more tools to help fight gender-related wage inequality.

LA MESA CHAMBER LAUNCHES "FALLFEST" LINEUP: "A LITTLE BIT COUNTRY AND A LITTLE BIT ROCK AND ROLL"

 

East County News Service

September 9, 2015 - The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce has announced the entertainment lineup of its new “FallFest” event being held October 16th and October 17th at Grossmont Center (5500 Grossmont Center Drive, in the Macy’s parking lot.)

The entertainment lineup will combine the best in music with “a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll.”

GOVERNOR VETOES BILL THAT WOULD HAVE ENDED WORKERS’ COMP PRACTICES THAT PENALIZE WOMEN WORKERS

 

 

East County News Service

October 7, 2015 (Sacramento) – Governor Jerry Brown has vetoed Assembly Bill 305, a measure that sought to eliminate gender bias against female employees in the awarding of workers’ compensation benefits in California.

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego), author of the bill, issued a statement voicing disappointment in the Governor’s action.  “I have said time and time again how much I admire and believe in this governor, but on this issue, he is dead wrong. With all due respect, a woman’s breasts are worth as much as the prostate of a male coworker and they should be valued as such if they were lost in a workplace injury,” said Gonzalez, a former labor leader and the Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Women in the Workplace.

She added, “Women should not be penalized for being pregnant or going through menopause, or be told the loss of a breast due to cancer acquired in the workplace has no value in California’s workers compensation system. I remain more committed than ever to continuing this fight for true equality in the workplace.”

FIGHTING OFFSHORING OF CALIFORNIA TECH JOBS - ONE STUDENT AT A TIME

 

A San Diego nonprofit is training web developers free in an effort to keep technology jobs in the U.S. Credit: SoftStack Factory

By Suzanne Potter, Public News Service

October 4, 2015 (San Diego) -- A quick search for web developer jobs in California turns up 10,000 positions, open, right now. But many young people don't have the skills to write code, and can't afford college or $10,000 for a coding boot camp. Consequently, many companies are sending the jobs overseas.

HAGGEN TO CLOSE ALL 25 GROCERY STORES IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY

 

October 2, 2015 (San Diego) – Just days after announcing plans to file for bankruptcy and reorganize around fewer but more profitable stores, Haggen Market has announced it will close all 25 San Diego County markets.

LA MESA RESTAURANTS NOT HAPPY WITH DOWNTOWN SIDEWALK PROJECT

 

By Mike Allen

Photo, left: Concrete pour for new sidewalk, courtesy City of La Mesa. See more photos on the City's Twitter feed for the project.

September 29, 2015 (La Mesa)--Several downtown La Mesa restaurants say the city’s Downtown Village Streetscape Improvement Project has taken a much bigger hit on their businesses than anticipated—and the owners aren’t happy about having to shell out more money to get their patio seating back.

While the project that began construction in July of last year is nearly finished, there’s still work to be done, and most restaurants haven’t had their outside patios re-installed in time for this weekend’s big Oktoberfest celebration.

CHAMBER TO HOST FORMER ASSEMBLY SPEAKER TONI ATKINS SEPT. 28, OTHER EVENTS NEXT WEEK

 

 

East County News Service

September 26, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce announces three upcoming events including a Sept. 28 lunch with former Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, a Sept. 29  after hours business mixer at Steele Canyon Golf Club, and an Oct. 2 breakfast at the La Mesa Community Center with Oktoberfest speakers.

COSMOS COFFEE CLOSES, BUT REOPENING MAY BE BREWING

 

East County News Service

September 22, 2015 (La Mesa)—Cosmos Coffee, a popular gathering spot in La Mesa’s downtown village, has closed its doors—for now. But the owner is hopeful that employees may want to takeover ownership and reopen.

The shop posted on its Facebook page on August 31, “It has been a pleasure to serve and be part of the community of LA Mesa for the last six years. Cosmos is closed temporarily. We will be updating the website and Facebook as soon as we know what is happening. We want to thank all of our loyal customers and we hope we will be back to make you all feel special and caffeinated as soon as possible. The Cosmos Crew.”

SEMPRA'S DEBRA REED RANKED AMONG FORTUNE'S 'MOST POWERFUL WOMEN IN BUSINESS' IN 2015

 

Source: Sempra

September 14, 2015 (San Diego) – For the fifth consecutive year, Fortune magazine has named Debra L. Reed, chairman and CEO of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), to the magazine’s “Most Powerful Women in Business” list.  Reed is ranked No. 23 in 2015, up from No. 30 last year.

HAGGEN FILES FOR BANKRUPTCY TO REORGANIZE AROUND FEWER STORES, PROFITABLE LOCATIONS

 

East County News Service

September 14, 2015 (San Diego’s East County)—Haggen, a major West Coast regional grocer, has announced plans to reorganize around its core profitable stores by filing voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company has received commitments for up to $215 million in debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing from its existing lenders to maintain operations and the flow of merchandise to its stores during the sale process.

LEADERS TAKE ACTION, REFLECT ON HISTORY OF U.S. WORKERS’ RIGHTS ON LABOR DAY

 

East County News Service

September 6, 2015 (San Diego)— Hundreds of thousands of workers for federal contractors will now receive paid leave when they are sick, thanks to an executive order signed by President Barack Obama in honor of Labor Day.

The U.S. Department of Labor has set up a special section on its website devoted to Labor Day news.  It notes that when workers prosper, the economy prospers too. “Shared prosperity is not just about economic fairness, but also national strength,” the Labor Department’s website states.

But as Americans celebrate the holiday, many are unaware of the origins of Labor Day, which has its roots in the Industrial Revolution, when many U.S. workers toiled 7 days a week, 12 hours a day. Wages were low and factory workers included children as young as 5 years old, toiling amid often dangerous and unsanitary conditions.

JAMUL TRIBAL COUNCIL ISSUES STATEMENT ON FATALITY AT CASINO SITE; CASINO OPPONENTS ALSO OFFER CONDOLENCES

By Miriam Raftery

September 6, 2015 (Jamul) – Following the September 1stdeath of a construction worker employed by C.W. Driver at the site of the Hollywood Casino Jamul, the Jamul Indian Village Tribal Council has issued a statement in its newsletter voicing “great sadness” at the tragedy and a message voicing support for workers this Labor Day weekend.

SPEAKER TONI ATKINS PUTS SPOTLIGHT ON WAGE THEFT IN SAN DIEGO TOWN HALL AUG. 29

 

Workers share how wage theft damages families, drives poverty; elected leaders share solutions to multi-billion annual wage heist  

August 28, 2015 (San Diego)--Speaker of the Assembly Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) along with California Labor Commissioner Julie Su and local leaders will host a “Fair Day’s Pay” town hall with San Diego workers on Saturday, August 29 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon.  The forum will spotlight how wage theft denies workers the opportunity to participate in the American Dream and leaves families in poverty.

The forum comes after a joint study by San Diego State University and the Center on Policy Initiatives found persuasive evidence of wage theft throughout San Diego’s food industry, with more than three-quarters (77%) of workers reporting having been victims of wage theft during the past year and a third saying theft from their paychecks occurs regularly.  Wage theft plagues workers in many other low-wage industries, and adds up to billions drained from California’s economy each year.

LA MESA CHAMBER ANNOUNCES CREATION OF THE "SENIOR PANTRY PROJECT"

 

August 25, 2015 (La Mesa) -- The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce announces the creation of a new project designed to assist seniors in need within our community.

ASSEMBLYWOMAN SHIRLEY WEBER PARTICIPATES IN DINE AND DIALOGUE

 

By Janis Russell

August 17, 2015 (El Cajon)- On Friday August 14, the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce hosted its 2nd Dine and Dialogue with Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, who spoke on issues including education, social justice, health care,  business opportunities , the minimum wage, and the state budget.

SUMMER BASH BUSINESS EXPO: A “WINNING COMBINATION” IN LA MESA

By Miriam Raftery, Photos by Leon Thompson

August 18, 2015 (La Mesa) – More than 180 people attended the second annual Summer Bash Business Expo in La Mesa on August 12th at the La Mesa Community Center, where 47 La Mesa Chamber of Commerce member businesses participated to spotlight their goods and services.

Guest savored food from 11 restaurants as well as wine served up by the Riviera Supper Club and the Regal bar plus Samuel Adams beer. In addition 47 guests were winners of door prizes given away. The Chamber also welcomed 14 new members to the organization. (Photo)

“FALLFEST” IS COMING TO GROSSMONT CENTER

Singer/Songwriter Brent Payne to perform October 17th

August 14, 2015 (La Mesa) --  The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce, “FallFest” as the name of their new event being heldOctober 16th and October 17th at 5500 Grossmont Center Drive in Grossmont Center.

The Chamber partnership on this new event with the well-respected Cushman family and the management team of Grossmont Center incorporates a strong marketing collaboration that will spotlight Grossmont Center as a destination for unique entertainment activities. This new entertainment experience will be produced in the Macy’s parking lot next door to Hooleys Irish Pub.

SYCUAN CASINO ROLLS OUT NEW BRANDING INITIATIVE WITH SPOTLIGHT ON COMMUNITY TIES

 

By Miriam Raftery

August 13, 2015 (Sycuan) – Sycuan Casino pulled out all the stops, bringing in Hollywood talent to premier a new branding campaign this week at a VIP/media event in the Live & Up Close Theater.

“It’s  a token of pride to be partnering with a number of charitable organizations,” said Cody Martinez, Tribal Chairman for the Syucan band of the Kumeyaay nation.  The casino’s new slogan is “Play. Win. Together.”   The slogan, video and related marketing campaign highlight the many local charities and community causes that benefit from Sycuan’s charitable giving, such as Rady Children’s Hospital,  the Padres , the Challenged Athletes Foundation and the Wounded Marines Fund.

CONGRESSWOMAN SUSAN DAVIS PARTICIPATES IN DINE AND DIALOGUE

 

 

By Janis Russell

August 9, 2015 (El Cajon)- Last Friday, July 31, the San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce hosted the first of its Dine and Dialogue series with Congresswoman Susan Davis.

THE PROPRIETOR'S RESERVE WINE BAR IS THE REAL DEAL

Photos courtesy of Sandra Small/ Photographer, Source: La Mesa Chamber of Commerce

August 11, 2015 (La Mesa) --A group of very happy and thirsty La Mesa Chamber members gathered to visit this new wine bar and be a part of the ribbon cutting to welcome Proprietor's Reserve  to La Mesa on Thursday, August 6th.  Owners, Barbara and Michael Rammelsberg were on hand and greeted members, with their warm smiles and bubbly personalities.  Barbara was there early, setting up the area to be sure that the cheeses and other delicious food items were ready as guests arrived.  

After the  ribbon cutting, guests were escorted into the restaurant and were treated to hot chicken wings and their special meatballs and other delectable items.  This is truly a family run business, as the crowd was introduced to their sons who were also on hand to meet attendees and were also reminded that their grandson works in the bar, the Turquoise Room as a bartender.  Michael spoke to the group and shared his vision, experience and goals for this new addition to the La Mesa business community. 

“WINE AND BEER GARDEN” FOUNDATION FUNDRAISER FOR EAST COUNTY PROGRAMS AUG. 20

 

 

East County Chamber of Commerce Foundation Hosts First Fundraising Event

August 11, 2015 (Rancho San Diego)--The East County Chamber of Commerce Foundation is hosting a first annual Wine & Beer Garden Fundraiser on Thursday, August 20 at The Water Conservation Garden from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

his premiere social event will help raise funds for some of the Foundation’s flagship business development and education programs, including the Ethics in Business Program, the East County Business Incubator Program, East County Business Resource Center, Business College Student Scholarships, and much more.   The event will feature several local restaurants, breweries and wineries, as well as Garden tours and a silent auction.

LAKESIDE CHAMBER HOSTS BUSINESS APPRECIATION EVENING AUG. 20

 

August 4, 2015 (Lakeside)--The Lakeside Chamber of Commerce will host a “Business Appreciation Evening” from 5 to 8 p.m.,Thursday, Aug. 20, at the Carter-Smith V.F.W. Post #5867, 12650 Lindo Lane, Lakeside. Admission is free. All Lakeside business owners and employees are invited to attend. Refreshments will include food samples and desserts from local eateries.

“SUMMER BASH” BUSINESS EXPO AUGUST 12 IN LA MESA

July 31, 2015  (La Mesa) - The La Mesa Chamber invites you to attend the upcoming “Summer Bash” Business Expo on Wednesday, August 12, 2015. This unique evening provides the public, as well as other business members with the opportunity to meet and enjoy conversation with over 50 local businesses that will be there. In addition to the fun-filled evening, the majority of the businesses participating will be giving away a free raffle item to lucky winners throughout the evening.

CONDITIONS MUST BE MET BEFORE LA MESA OKTOBERFEST PERMIT WILL BE ISSUED

Concerns raised over merchants group's solvency and credibility during heated hearing

By Kristin Kjaero

August 3, 2015 (La Mesa) – Whether or not there will be an Oktoberfest 2015 is in the hands of the La Mesa Village Merchants Association (LMVMA).

On Tuesday, the Council voted 4-1 to grant conditional approval for this year’s Oktoberfest, with Council member Ruth Sterling voting against. The deal requires the LMVMA to pay all outstanding debt plus a 25% security deposit and meet a scheduled list of new requirements giving the City oversight of LMVMA’s outside contracts for the event, before an Oktoberfest permit will be issued.

If all deadlines are met, Oktoberfest 2015 will be smaller and shorter: two days instead of three, closing an hour earlier, and held only in the downtown area east side of Spring Street. However, if any deadline is not met, Oktoberfest will be automatically cancelled with no further Council action required--and no refunds.

The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce hosts "Christmas in July"

July 30, 2015 (La Mesa) -- The La Mesa Chamber of Commerce was proud to host a gift giving activity in partnership with the Town & Country Resort & Convention Center. "Christmas in July” allowed toys to be given to the La Mesa City Employees Association, who will distribute them to deserving children during this year’s holiday season.

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