Gasoline prices in California have been above – way above – national averages because the Exxon Mobil refinery in Torrance has been hobbled since an explosion in February. And now, a hearing scheduled for Wednesday on whether to allow the refinery to increase operations has been postponed by air quality officials, the Los Angeles Times reports. Exxon Mobil wants to use old air-pollution control equipment temporarily so it can increase production at the same time it reduces other emissions from the plant. But regulators seem unconcerned about $4 a gallon gasoline and want to study how the proposal would impact area homeowners.
Only seven of 32 reporting counties in the state had home prices that are affordable to home buyers who earn the areas’ median household income, while homes in 25 counties were out of reach for the typical household, the C.A.R. study found.
The Port of Los Angeles saw a less than 1 percent increase in container cargo movement last month compared to the year-ago period, though the increase was due to a large volume of empty containers heading back overseas.
In a decision that could impact developers across the state, the California Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday to allow Los Angeles and other cities to require that developers provide affordable housing as a condition of getting building permits.
Calling California’s cap-and-trade emissions auctions a form of extortion, the National Federal of Independent Business’ Small Business Legal Center has filed a brief in the Third District California Court of Appeals, saying the auctions are a burden to small business and that the California Air Resources Board lacks the legal authority to sell emission allowances.
The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday voted 14-1 to support creating a citywide minimum wage, which will rise from the current statewide minimum of $9 an hour today to $15 an hour over the next five years.
Japanese equipment manufacturer Kubota Tractor Corp. and its financing arm Kubota Credit Corp. are leaving Torrance. And like a handful of other companies that have left the area lately, Kubota is decamping for the Lone Star State.
New, final number show the number of visitors to the county hit 44.2 million, up 4.8 percent from the previous year. Of those, foreign travelers accounted for 6.5 million visits, up 5.6 percent from 2013.
“Farmer Bros. told the Business Journal earlier this year that it expected its relocation plan to result in annual savings of from $12 million to $15 million, beginning in the latter half of next year. However, moving will cost the company between $35 million to $40 million in new facility costs with an additional $20 million to $25 million in anticipated capital expenditures for furniture, machinery, equipment and other necessities. The company expects the cost of moving to be partially offset by profits from the sale of its Torrance headquarters, which company officials believe to be worth as much as $35 million.”
As Los Angeles officials await a study on the economic impact of a pair of proposals to raise the minimum wage, both business and labor groups have weighed in with their own studies.
Congestion at the docks dragged down cargo volume at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles for a second consecutive month in February, according to figures released Tuesday.
The forecast calls for steady gains in employment from now through 2017 and estimates total employment will grow at a rate of 2.4 percent this year, 2.2 percent next year and 1.5 percent in 2017. Payrolls are also expected to grow at about the same rate over the next three years.
The Port of Los Angeles saw January cargo volumes fall nearly 23 percent compared with the same month a year ago, a result of the slowdowns and partial shutdowns that gripped the local ports during contentions contract negotiations between shipping lines and dockworkers.
The amount of cargo that moved through the Port of Long Beach in January took a nearly 19 percent nosedive compared to the same month last year because of ongoing congestion and labor strife, officials said late Wednesday.
Los Angeles County should add a total of 150,000 payroll jobs over the course of this year and next, bringing employment to record levels, according to the forecast from the LAEDC’s Kyser Center for Economic Research. What’s more, the unemployment rate should dip to 6.6 percent by the end of next year, its lowest level in eight years.