Business and Labor

'JOYOUS' CELEBRATION FOR LA MESA'S UNION BANK, 14 MONTHS AFTER BURNING NIGHTMARE

By Ken and Chris Stone, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association 

Photo:  taking part were (left to right) Talon Dobesh, Aviana Dobesh, Union Bank president Greg Seibly, Union Bank head of community banking Lisa Roberts, CEO of MUFG Americas Kevin Cronin, branch manager Carlton Hill and Omar Salah, head of small business banking at Union Bank. Photo by Chris Stone

July 30, 2021 (La Mesa) - The night of May 30, 2020, two banks burned to the ground amid La Mesa rioting. The next day, officials of one, Union Bank, were making plans to rebuild at the same location.

GRAND OPENING FOR HANDEL’S HOMEMADE ICE CREAM IN SANTEE POSTPONED TO JULY 29

 

Update July 18 from Handel's: "We have made the difficult decision to postpone the opening. We have extended training for our staff to provide the best customer service. The grand opening has been changed to July 29 at 11 a.m."

 
By Rebecca Jefferis Williamson

(Photo, left, by Rebecca Jefferis Williamson) 

July 9, 2021 (Santee) -- The grand opening for the eagerly awaited ice cream parlor in Santee, Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream, is slated for July 22.

Handel’s  will  offer many flavors which are homemade at the store, with seasonal and other flavors available all year round.

Cinnamon pecan, pizzelle, dulce de leche, spouse like a house, and green tea are  just a few of the flavors. Sherberts, yogurt, fat-free/-no sugar added ice cream, plus vegan options are just a sampling of their products.

SUMMER STEPHAN ANNOUNCES WIN AGAINST AUTO-RENEWAL SUBSCRIPTION FEES

Match has already taken steps to ensure its web disclosures and processes comply with California’s Automatic Renewal and Dating Service Contract laws.

Source: DA News Center

July 12, 2021 (San Diego) -- County District Attorney Summer Stephan (photo, left) announced Wednesday that Match Group, Inc., the owner of numerous popular online dating sites including Match.com, PlentyofFish, OkCupid and Tinder, agreed to pay $2 million in civil penalties and costs, in addition to victim restitution, as part of the settlement of a consumer protection lawsuit. The lawsuit was filed in Santa Cruz county in November 2020 by the California Auto Renewal Task Force (CART), which includes the District Attorney’s Offices in San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, and Santa Cruz counties and the Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office, and alleged that Match’s online dating service subscriptions violated provisions of California’s automatic-renewal and dating service contract laws.

VIRTUAL MILITARY SPOUSE EMPLOYMENT WEBINAR AUGUST 12 HOSTED BY CONGRESSMAN ISSA’S OFFICE

East County News Service

July 8, 2021 (San Diego) -- The Office of Congressman Darrell Issa (CA-50) will host a free online military spouse informational webinar  on Thursday, August 12  from 11:00-12:00 p.m. The Department of Defense will provide an overview of the extensive career and education resources available to military spouses, including the launching of an online “My SECO” (Spouse Education and Career Opportunities) portal.

NEW BARBERSHOP, STUDIO CUTZ, OPENS IN LA MESA

By Briana Gomez

July 3, 2021 (La Mesa) -- Studio Cutz, a new barbershop in La Mesa located at 7520 El Cajon Blvd.,  had its ribbon cutting ceremony today.

The shop is offering $20 haircuts all week until July 4 with a valid I.D.

La Mesa Mayor Mark Arapostathis and Reverend Shane Harris of the People’s Association of Justice Advocates participated in the grand opening and praised owner Aydarus Sakawe.

“He’s mindful of the youth. He wants to encourage everyone to not only come and get a haircut, but he’s a member of the community and wants to serve the community, and so we’re so happy to have Studio Cutz coming to La Mesa,” Mayor Arapostathis said.

US DEPT. OF LABOR RECOVERS BACK WAGES FOR CONSTRUCTION WORKERS DENIED OVERTIME WAGES BY JAMUL COMPANY

J S Plastering of Jamul also assessed $25,000 in penalties for willful violations

 By Miriam Raftery

June 30, 2021 (Jamul) – Failing to pay overtime wages has cost JS Plastering of Jamul nearly $125,000 in back wages and penalties.

An investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division found that the company paid overtime hours at straight-time rates in unrecorded cash, instead of paying time and a half as required by law when employees work more than 40 hours in a week.  

The investigation led to the recovery of $98,720 in overtime back wages owed to 39 employees and assessment of $25,380 in penalties for the employer’s willful violation of the law.

FORMER LA MESA EMPORIUM SITE IN LA MESA VILLAGE SELLS FOR $1.85 MILLION

East County News Service

June 23, 2021 (La Mesa) – Location Matters, Inc. has announced sale of a retail building at 8371 in the heart of La  Mesa’s downtown village for $1,850,000.  The buyer is Whissel Realty Group, a family-owned real estate company that plans to move its corporate office to this location. 

VACCINATED WORKERS CAN GO MASK-FREE STARTING JUNE 17 IF CAL-OSHA APPROVES GOVERNOR’S PLAN; MANY OTHER RESTRICTIONS END TUESDAY

By Miriam Raftery

June 14, 2021 (Sacramento) – With case-rates dropping and California now having the third-lowest rate of positive COVID-19 test results in the nation, the state is poised to end its color-coded tiers and lift most restrictions tomorrow. But employers have been in limbo as Cal-OSHA delayed a decision last week on rules to protect workers.

Now, Cal-OSHA is expected to approve new workplace rules proposed by Governor Gavin Newsom this week, which would allow fully vaccinated workers in most workplaces to remove masks and end social distancing requirements starting June 17th.

That’s a turnaround from an earlier proposal by Cal-OSHA, which would have required all workers to wear masks if anyone in the workplace wasn’t vaccinated but drew objections from employers’ groups.

CALIFORNIA'S BIG REOPENING: WHAT CHANGES AND WHAT DOESN'T ON JUNE 15?

By Ben Christopher, CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters

Photo:  Carlos Hernandez holds his mask while getting a haircut by Sarah Cordiey at Spiros Barber Shop in Long Beach on June 9, 2021. "During the pandemic, I got depression and anxiety," said Hernandez, who saw his family for the first time last week in more than one year. "But then when I got [fully] vaccinated I felt a lot better." Photo by Pablo Unzueta for CalMatters

June 14, 2021 (San Diego) - California’s grand reopening day is almost here, but it comes with a few asterisks. 

If all goes as expected and promised, on June 15 our 15-month-long ordeal of public health restrictions, mandates, bans and color-coded tiers to stem the COVID-19 pandemic will finally come to an end. As Gov. Gavin Newsom said in April and reaffirmed in May, tomorrow is when “we can start to open up…business as usual.”

SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT HAS HUNDREDS OF JOBS TO FILL

Source: San Diego Sheriff’s Department

June 10, 2021 (San Diego's East County) -- Are you or someone you know looking for a job? The San Diego County Sheriff's Department is hiring. 

Watch the latest recruiting video: One Agency, Multiple Career Possibilities. 

You can apply online at joinsdsheriff.net. Or you can begin the hiring process by texting the word "JOIN" to (855) 737-4374.

UNION BANK GIVES $2,500 TO LEMON GROVE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

By Miriam Raftery

June 6, 2021 (Lemon Grove) – Lemon Grove Historical Society President Laura Hook was surprised when she was invited to a customer service event at Union Bank’s new location at 3285 Lemon Grove Avenue – and left with a $2,500 check.

GOVERNOR SAYS CALIFORNIA RESTAURANTS CAN CONTINUE ALCOHOL TO GO AFTER PANDEMIC

By Chris Jennewein, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association 

Photo:  Gov. Gavin Newsom outside Tommy’s Mexican Restaurant in San Francisco on Thursday. Courtesy of the Governor’s office

June 4, 2021 (San Diego) - Restaurants across California will be able to continue offering a profitable service that evolved during the COVID-19 pandemic — selling alcoholic beverages to-go — Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Thursday.

WINNERS OF CONNECT ALL @ THE JACOBS CENTER'S FOURTH UNION BANK START-UP PITCH COMPETITION ANNOUNCED

Three San Diego Entrepreneurs Win Business Grants

 

Photo: The first place winner of the fourth Union Bank Start-Up Pitch Competition and audience choice awardee, in partnership with CONNECT ALL @ the Jacobs Center, First Gen Scholars Founder and Executive Director Jonathan Burgos (center) and children.

 

Courtesy of CONNECT ALL @ the Jacobs Center

May 28, 2021 (San Diego) — Yesterday, CONNECT ALL @ the Jacobs Center and Union Bank announced the winners of the fourth Union Bank Start-Up Pitch Competition. In partnership with the City of San Diego, the virtual pitch competition serves as the program culmination for the fourth group of startups who received four months of free business development and mentorship. CONNECT ALL @ the Jacobs Center is the region’s only business accelerator focused on serving low-to-moderate income and diverse founders.

LA MESA CHAMBER WELCOMES WINE WORKS AFTER REOPENING

By Miriam Raftery

Photos by Sandra Small

May 22, 2021 (La Mesa) - La Mesa Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting to welcome its newest member, Wine Works. The La Mesa winery and tasting room recently reopened to the public after the pandemic shutdown.

LA MESA WELCOMES NEW COFFEE SHOP: PINK ROSE CAFE

By Angela Kurysh

May 11, 2021 (La Mesa) – “You can never have too much pink,” said Nadia Zamora, who finally opens up her coffee shop, Pink Rose Cafe on La Mesa Boulevard this week.

After working on this project for over 14 months amid pandemic lockdowns and a riot, Zamora and her husband were ready to peacefully give up, but with the constant support of the community and the mission behind their business, Pink Rose Cafe will be launching its new spot with a ribbon cutting ceremony this Wednesday, May 12, at 10:30am; the official grand opening will be Saturday, May 15, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

JONES’S MEASURE TO PROTECT FOSTER KIDS FROM CHILD LABOR TRAFFICKING UNANIMOUSLY PASSES SENATE

Source: Senator Brian W. Jones
 
May 4, 2021 (Sacramento) -- A measure authored by Senator Brian W. Jones (R-Santee), based on recommendations of the California Little Hoover Commission and the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking, was approved unanimously by the State Senate. 

RESTAURANTS AND OTHER FOOD AND ALCOHOL VENUES CAN NOW APPLY FOR RESTAURANT REVITALIZATION FUNDS UNDER AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN

East County News Service

 

May 4, 2021 (San Diego) – Applications can now be submitted for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund to offset losses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. To apply, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration’s application portal.  The fund is part of the American Rescue Plan and is open not only to restaurants, but also caters, bars, bakeries, wineries, breweries, food carts, inns and certain other businesses where food sales provided a major source of revenues.

EL CAJON OPENS NEW BUSINESS GRANT PROGRAM MAY 3

East County News Service

 

Photo: Creative Commons image via Bing

 

April 30, 2021 (El Cajon) -- On April 27th, the El Cajon City Council voted to allocate a portion of the American Recovery Act funds to support local businesses. $5 million has been designated to the El Cajon Business Grant Program where business owners may select from one of two options and receive up to $15,000 in grant funding.

THE SAN DIEGO CITY COUNCIL PASSED MEASURE C, BUT WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR EAST COUNTY?

By Briana Gomez

Photo: Juan Alaric, General Manager, Courtyard Marriott El Cajon

View video:  https://youtu.be/1l8_SdyFlYs

April 27, 2021 (San Diego) -- The San Diego City Council voted 6-3 earlier this month to affirm Measure C, bypassing voters in the 2020 election. 

Measure C is a measure that increases hotel taxes to expand the convention center and provide support for homeless initiatives.

EMBR DISPENSARY, LARGEST IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY, OPENS IN LA MESA

Source: La Mesa Chamber of Commerce

Photo courtesy of Sandra Small, photographer

April 27, 2021 (La Mesa) -- On Tuesday April 20, the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce joined members of the community and vendors at the grand opening of EMBR Dispensary. This new 35,000 square-foot dispensary at 8300 Center Drive in La Mesa is the largest dispensary in San Diego county.

JAMUL CASINO PROMOTES THERESA GRADY TO CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER

Experienced Casino Finance Leader Advances to Executive Position
 
East County News Service
 
April 13, 2021 (Jamul) -- Jamul Casino® has announced that Theresa Grady (photo, left) has been promoted to Chief Financial Officer (CFO).  Her advancement comes after nearly four years with the Casino as its former Director of Finance, where she was highly involved in building the Casino’s Finance, Audit, Vendor Payments, Payroll, and Count Operations teams, and in helping spearhead the completion of the Casino’s recent refinance in January 2021. 
 
With several other high-profile promotions in recent years, Ms. Grady’s elevation to CFO demonstrates Jamul Casino’s commitment to the professional growth of its team members, according to a press release.

SUPERVISORS REJECT FEE HIKES ON BUSINESSES

Source: Supervisor Joel Anderson’s office
 
April 12, 2021 (San Diego) -- The San Diego County Board of Supervisors has unanimously approved a recommendation to prevent over $600,000 in fee increases and new fees proposed for Fiscal Year 2021-22. Instead, the County will explore the use of federal American Rescue Plan Act funds to cover anticipated budget shortfalls. 

VACCINE PASSPORTS IN CALIFORNIA? ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS

By Barbara Feder Ostrov, CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters.

Photo:  Domingo Comin, an employee at Carefield Assisted Living in Castro Valley, holds his vaccination card. Californa health officials say they have no plans to develop a state vaccination passport. Photo by Anne Wernikoff, CalMatters

April 9, 2021 (San Diego) - Now that more than 7.5 million Californians have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the Newsom administration has set a goal of reopening the state’s economy by June 15. So what does the state plan to do when it comes to proving that people are vaccinated?

GOVERNOR SAYS CALIFORNIA CAN FULLY REOPEN JUNE 15; SAN DIEGO ENTERS 'ORANGE' TIER

By Chris Jennewein, Times of San Diego, a member of the San Diego Online News Association

Photo:  Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks outside a vaccination site in San Francisco on Tuesday. Image from live feed

April 7, 2021 (San Diego) - Marking a major step in a return to normalcy, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday that all COVID-19 restrictions on businesses, gatherings and recreational activities will be lifted June 15, although a statewide mask mandate will remain in place.

CESAR CHAVEZ HISTORY AT ANZA-BORREGO HONORED ON MARCH 31

East County News Service

March 27, 2021 (Borrego Springs) -- Did you know? Cesar Chavez has important history in Borrego Springs and in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (ABDSP). To honor this history, bilingual interpretive panels were devised that depict these historic events, a joint project between Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and High School students at Borrego Springs High School. 

SAN DIEGO STILL DOESN'T HAVE EQUITABLE INTERNET ACCESS ONE YEAR INTO PANDEMIC

Community activists have long underscored the impacts of the gaps of access to high speed, reliable internet to non-White and poorer communities and they’ve critiqued public leaders for not taking quicker action to bridge the divide.

By Kayla Jimenez, Voice of San Diego

This post has been updated.

Image via Pixabay

March 23, 2021 (San Diego) - A year after the pandemic made having a reliable internet connection a requisite for countless families, professionals, school children and others, the number of people without it has not changed and cities across the San Diego region have either no plan to address it or no money to fund their plans.

CHEERS! BREWERIES, WINERIES AND DISTILLERIES CAN OPEN OUTDOORS, EVEN WITHOUT FOOD SERVICE

East County News Service
 
March 17, 2021 (San Diego) – Breweries, wineries and distilleries have been hard-hit by state COVID-19 restrictions. But effective March 13, they can now reopen for outdoor service in counties in the state’s most restrictive purple and red tiers – even if they don’t serve food.  

SUPERVISORS APPROVE CREATION OF YOUTH ENVIRONMENTAL/RECREATION CORPS TO PROVIDE GREEN JOBS TRAINING

By Miriam Raftery

 

Photo: Creative Commons image by NC-ND

 

March 16, 2021 (San Diego) -- Today the San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 in support of the Youth Environmental/Recreation Corps, a program aimed to provide youth with skills training and opportunities to develop knowledge, practice skills and gain work experience in the growing sector of green economies. Youth Will has been working closely with Supervisor Lawson-Remer and the Invest in San Diego Families coalition to promote this initiative and ensure the youth voice is represented in improving access to green space and green work opportunities.

CALIFORNIA HITS KEY VACCINATION BENCHMARK, MOVING SAN DIEGO COUNTY CLOSER TO 'RED' TIER

By Ana B. Ibarra and Rachel Becker | CalMatters

CalMatters is a public interest journalism venture committed to explaining how California’s state Capitol works and why it matters.

Photo:  a woman is vaccinated at the Sharp super station in Chula Vista. Courtesy County News Center

March 14, 2021 (San Diego) - California on Friday hit a benchmark of delivering 2 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to underserved communities, triggering a big change that will transform the state’s reopening map from purple to mostly red.

SAN DIEGO'S LOCAL UMBRELLA MEDIA ENTERS INTO AGREEMENT WITH TOWNE POST NETWORK

Source:  Local Umbrella Media

March 14, 2021 (San Diego) - San Diego based monthly direct mail publication company Local Umbrella Media (LocalUmbrellaNews.com) announced today they have entered into an agreement with the Towne Post Network (TownePost.com), an Indiana-based cross-platform publishing company.

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