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BizBrief: Today’s News To Know

CSULB Professor Announces Candidacy For 2nd District Council Seat
Dr. Eduardo Lara, a sociology professor of California State University, Long Beach, announced his intention to compete for a seat on the Long Beach City Council yesterday. A Long Beach resident for over a decade, Lara is a board member of The LGBTQ Center Long Beach and ran for the Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education’s 3rd District seat last year, but was defeated in the general election. If elected to lead the Long Beach City Council’s 2nd District, Lara hopes to focus on beautification, economic inclusion, access, climate change and housing, according to a campaign press release. “We are building a rainbow coalition of Long Beach residents from all walks of life and abilities,” Lara said. “Together, we will move our district forward by focusing on issues like affordable housing, accessible parking, a healthy environment, small-business development, public safety, youth programs, resources for the elderly, and ensuring that all Long Beach workers are treated with the dignity they deserve.”

Kaiser Permanente And Union Coalition Reach Agreement
Kaiser Permanente and the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions have reached a four-year collective bargaining agreement effective through September 20, 2023. The agreement covers more than 84,000 employees of the health care organization throughout the nation. It includes annual pay increases, and maintains health and retirement benefits.

Long Beach City Auditor Identifies Necessary Changes To Prevent Sewage Overflows
Last week, Long Beach City Auditor Laura Doud released the results of an audit that identified the need to re-evaluate and improve cleaning, inspection, tracking and education activities by the Long Beach Water Department (LBWD) to prevent sanitary sewer overflows. Between 2014 and 2018, there were 103 such overflows in Long Beach, the audit found. Sewer overflows can lead to environmental damage, public health risks, beach closures, business closures, damage to property, and financial costs and penalties against the city, a press release stated. LBWD’s Sewer System Management Plan mostly meets federal and state requirements aimed at reducing preventable overflows, the audit found, and the department is meeting its preventative sewer line maintenance and repair targets. However, the audit also found that additional attention and resources were needed to address the department’s repair backlog, which has increased 62% over the five years reviewed. A majority of sewer overflows, 71%, in the reviewed timeframe were caused by fat, oil and grease (FOG). The FOG Control Program, which is supposed to limit the improper disposal of these substances, showed deficiencies, according to a press release. Doud noted that the department only performed inspections at two thirds of all FOG-prone food franchise locations in Long Beach, that inspection checklists lacked necessary detail and expectations for proper disposal were not sufficiently communicated to restaurant staff.

Hotel Maya Appoints New Director Of Sales And Marketing
The Hotel Maya, which operates under the DoubleTree by Hilton brand, announced the appointment of Allison Lesser as its new director of sales and marketing last week. Before joining the team in charge of promoting the 199-room resort, Lesser served as vice president of business development at BTS Hospitality, a hospitality consulting firm. “Allison is an experienced hospitality professional with hands-on industry experience in hotels, restaurants, special events, tourism and convention sales,” Greg Guthrie, general manager of the Hotel Maya, said in a press release. “She has a proven track record of leading and developing high performing sales teams.” Lesser holds a bachelor’s degree in hotel and restaurant management from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. In previous roles, she served as the director of sales and marketing at W San Diego and director of sales at Westin Long Beach.

Jewish Long Beach Announces New Director of Finance and Administration
Jewish Long Beach, formerly the Jewish Federation and Jewish Community Foundation of Long Beach and West Orange County, announced the appointment of Raymond R. Brown as its new director of finance and administration. In this position, Brown will oversee the organization’s financial infrastructure, human resources, and administrative procedures, a release by the organization stated. He will also work closely with the CEO and board of directors to help manage Jewish Long Beach’s nearly $30 million in assets, the release noted. Brown previously served as chief financial officer of The Arc of Los Angeles and Orange Counties.

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