The Voice of Business
The SCV Chamber successfully works on behalf of its members to maintain a healthy and vibrant business climate in what has been ranked one of the most business friendly cities in California. The Chamber takes an active role in shaping legislative policies in support of business. We represent our members before local, regional, state and federal governmental entities and provides a forum for our members to develop policy positions that directly impact the Santa Clarita Valley business community. The SCV Chamber works with all elected officials, irrelevant of political party affiliations.
The following information defines and guides the SCV Chamber’s advocacy efforts and provides contact details for our elected representatives.
Public Policy Pillars
The Chamber Board of Directors adopted a set of Public Policy Pillars to convery to policymakers what the business community in the Santa Clarita Valley strives for. The Public Policy Pillars are set in place to guide the Chamber in directing our advocacy efforts. They are not intended to set specific policy priorities for the organization, but rather they should shape the way any policymaker approaches the decision they make.
The Chamber supports a positive environment in which businesses in our local area, city, region and state can continue to flourish and remain competitive. The Chamber supports the following:
- Sensible changes in state labor laws and regulations aimed at making the workplace easier to administer;
- Changes in tax policy that keep businesses competitive;
- Local efforts to implement roadway improvements, infrastructure projects and other construction in a way that impacts the fewest businesses as possible; and
- Revisions to the state's workers' compensation system to bring balance and fairness to what has become a contentious system.
- The Chamber opposes government mandated unionization and supports unionization as a worker's choice.
- The Chamber supports thoughtful legislation that works to remove cumbersome policies and works to streamline business success.
The Chamber endorses tax policies that would enhance the competitiveness of our local businesses, such as business tax reforms and other changes to help further business development and worker retention. This would ensure that our businesses are not put at an economic disadvantage.
With a critical housing shortage in the state, housing is a top priority for the Chamber and we supports the thoughtful growth of the Santa Clarita Valley under the One Valley, One Vision general plan and supports policies that encourage smart growth planning and a jobs/housing balance.
The Chamber gets involved with a wide range of health care and health care industry related issues. From educating our members on the details, rules, to critical public policy debates affecting health care costs, health sector jobs and services, we mobilize on health care issues that are important to our members and our economy. We work to inform lawmakers, guide decision-making and generate support for policies on critical issues that impact physicians, patients and the health care environment at the local, state, and federal level.
The Chamber supports efforts to move toward increase use of renewable forms of energy. The Chamber recognizes energy choice and is concerned about efforts limiting the choice on energy resources. The Chamber supports recycling, conservation and green development for all new construction and working toward carbon neutrality goals. The Chamber is also aware that it is critical for business attraction and retention to improve our existing infrastructure and find new, reliable sources for natural gas, energy, water and other resources critical to the sustained growth of our community and economy. The Chamber supports the installation of alternative vehicle charging stations and greater use of near-zero and zero-emission light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles.
The Chamber believes that Los Angeles, as the nation's top trade gateway and the area with the most automobiles per capita, the region cannot afford to ignore the effect that traffic congestion is having on our economy and quality of life. The Chamber supports policies that improve safety, mobility and relieve congestion on our roads and freeways to maximize region's ability to move people and goods and to deliver services. The Chamber opposes efforts to limit the movement of people or goods that is designed to constrict the economy or the construction of housing in our region.
The Chamber believes that a workforce equipped with the skills for today’s and tomorrow’s jobs is critical for the future of the region’s economy. The Chamber advocates for educational funding, policy and reforms that heighten community engagement; promote autonomy, critical and creative thinking and entrepreneurship; and, support education systems that inspire lifelong learning among community residents and fulfill the needs of regional employers for a highly skilled workforce.
The Chamber considers safety to be a top priority and support increasing the size and presence of our law enforcement and fire departments to allow for a decrease in response times and a reduction in crime. It is our priority to work with County, State and Federal partners to ensure adequate aerial firefighting resources and opportunities for expansion. It is imperative that we ensure our public safety officers are effectively equipped to business and residents as well as fight fires when they are simultaneously occurring in other counties and regions.
The Chamber supports policies to maintain and increase the region's booming tourism industry. With more than 25 million visitors coming to Los Angeles County each year, the Chamber recognizes the industry's importance to our region's economic stability and growth and believes there are opportunities for local tourism growth .
Industry, Manufacturing & Technology
We support public policies that allow our manufacturing, processing, and technology industries to thrive. We believe in competitive tax policies for manufacturers, increased career technical education and training for students, a direct focus on improving workforce development and achieving greenhouse gas reductions while protecting and promoting industry and manufacturing jobs and the economy.
The Chamber supports a safe and reliable water supply in the Santa Clarita Valley. The Chamber recognizes the importance of the State Water Project and the proposed Delta Conveyance system to our local water supply and will advocate for funding. There will be continued support for water use efficiency efforts, locally and throughout the state. The Chamber understands the concerns about polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) that have been detected in multiple wells across the agency service area, and will work with the Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency, the Santa Clara River Watershed Area Steering Committee, and our local and state elected officials and staff on solving this issue.
2023 Legislative Priorities
2023 LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES
Based on input and suggestions from our local business community, the Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce is proud to establish our 2023 Legislative Priorities. Below are the top local and state policy issues that will be the focus of the Chamber’s advocacy efforts for 2023:
Economy & Jobs
- Support research and development in high-growth and emerging industries, including, but not limited to, life sciences, arts, culture, entertainment/sports, film and digital media, rail/bus manufacturing, other advanced transportation manufacturing and maintenance, and green chemistry/clean manufacturing, and support proposals which would facilitate job training and educational opportunities that will train a workforce capable of supporting those industries.
- Oppose attempts to raise the statewide cap on local sales and use taxes.
- Promote a clean energy resource mix to support consumer choice, ensure reasonable, and reliable energy service.
- Support policy decisions that promote the growth of innovation, technology sectors that meet consumer demands.
- Oppose legislation that would prohibit or limit local governments’ ability to contract out for the provision of services.
- Advocate for regulations and processes, including the fast tracking of building new purpose-built studios in the Santa Clarita Valley, that facilitate enhanced film, television, and commercial production in the Santa Clarita Valley.
- Support legislation that will preserve or enhance the tools, incentives, and programs utilized by local governments and the state that will promote filming in California.
- Support incentives and programs to keep filming within California.
- Call for the reinstatement of the flexible work week that allows individual employees to request deviation from the 8-hour, five-day state mandate.
- Support increased career technical, vocational, computer science and STEAM funding in schools.
- Work to ensure that federal funding remains in place for community health centers, which will guarantee access to healthcare and protect tens of thousands of jobs.
- Support legislation which limits the time period after termination in which a worker’s compensation claim can be filed.
- Advocate for a minimum 65-day right to cure period before a lawsuit can be filed against an employer under the Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA).
- Work to amend the minimum salary threshold for exempt employees so that it is not linked to the minimum wage.
- Oppose legislation that mandates local governments provide specific benefits to employees, including single payer or universal healthcare, or removes or limits local authority to determine the level of benefits to be provided to employees.
- Support legislation or grant opportunities for local governments that provide funding for development or enhancing alternative fueling stations for vehicles.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, or administrative actions to accelerate the development, implementation, and decarbonization of enhanced electrical utility infrastructure, including undergrounding of utility equipment, that ensures reliable utility service and public safety and reduces the need for public safety power shutoffs with minimal financial impacts to business, providing options for homeowners and not impacting grid reliability.
- Advocate for measures that support the growth or expansion of local businesses.
- Advocate for the protection of independent contractors and the gig economy, allowing Californians to work independently for many reasons: flexibility, quality of life, more control over their work, more economic security, or extra money on the side.
- Oppose legislation, regulatory proposals, special directives, or administrative actions that preempt judicial discretion in the review and sentencing of misdemeanors and felonies, including the issuance of bail.
Land Use & Housing
- Oppose legislation that would infringe upon the authority of local governments to effectively administer and consider unique local circumstances when processing permits and enforcing building and safety standards.
- Protect and defend Proposition 13 and fight against increased property taxes, which would make California’s affordability crisis and high tax burden even worse.
- Oppose any effort to create a Split Roll that would potentially remove any protections for nonresidential and residential properties in order to raise taxes on them.
- Support land use decisions and zoning changes that will support the economic vitality of our business community while protecting our community’s quality of life.
- Continue to support comprehensive policy solutions that includes mitigation to protect the public, our communities, and the economy from the risks posed by wildfires and other natural disasters.
- Oppose any effort to unduly limit or restrict the building of all types of housing throughout the entire Santa Clarita Valley, specifically the limitation of housing in high fire severity zones or the unreasonable expansion of such designations.
- Push to reform and streamline the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).
- Oppose legislation that would interfere with, limit, or eliminate the decision-making authority of municipalities in the area of local land use.
- Oppose legislation that proposes to convert the Regional Housing Need Assessment (RHNA) from a planning process to a production standard.
- Oppose legislation that penalizes a city or local government if the units identified in the RHNA are not constructed.
- Oppose legislation that seeks to circumvent local control and local circumstances when addressing homelessness.
- Support the development of housing at all economic levels to address all housing types; homelessness, workforce housing in the greater Santa Clarita Valley.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, or administrative efforts that provide additional authority or funding for municipalities to address homeless issues within their communities.
- Support legislation to authorize state funding to assist local agencies in the development of affordable housing, infrastructure, and economic development projects.
- Support proposals to provide additional resources for meeting the capital and operational costs of housing production and related supportive service needs of low- and moderate income families and of special populations, including homeless, elderly, disabled and mentally ill persons, and transitional age youth.
- Support legislation that requires local government consultation and approval before the State of California may issue approval or permits in a manufactured housing community, which, were it not for preemptive state jurisdiction, would otherwise require local government review and approval.
- Support legislation and grant opportunities that will preserve or increase funding for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program and HOME Investment Partnerships Program.
- Support proposals which would stimulate the local economy by accelerating or increasing spending on public works and infrastructure projects, especially those which would improve public health and public safety, mitigate hazards, including climate hazards, reduce energy usage greenhouse gas emissions, or improve transportation.
- Energy Choice: Advocate for balanced energy policies that recognize the importance of energy choice and multifaceted approach to reaching California’s 2030 and 2045 decarbonization goals for business and a cleaner environment.
- Fire Insurance: Support efforts against insurance rate increases for residents and businesses in the Santa Clarita Valley as state declares the area to be hazardous for future fire breakouts.
- Oppose efforts by the State, County, local and regional governments and agencies, including SCAG, to limit or eliminate areas for growth and development through the development of plans such as the SoCal Greenprint and VMT’s.
- Oppose legislation, regulatory proposals, or administrative actions to limit or eliminate local government authority or mandate by-right approvals relative to the siting or modification of telecommunications equipment or infrastructure, including small cell wireless and fiber equipment.
- Oppose legislation that limits or eliminates local discretionary review of the installation of small cell wireless equipment or any wireless or broadband technology facilities on public infrastructure or in the public right of way.
- Support legislation that enhances transparency in the decision-making process of the State Water Resources Control Board and the Regional Water Quality Control Board, CARB and SCAQMD.Water Contamination: Support efforts to protect Santa Clarita Valley residents from water contamination, and work with the Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency, the Santa Clara River Watershed Area Steering Committee, and elected official offices.
- Monitor and influence legislation or other actions related to the reasonable management of water, consistent with being good water stewards, and oppose policies that outright prohibit local water accessibility.
- Support acceleration of all Measure M-funded Metro projects and remain in voter approved plan priority schedule for funding and construction.
- Oppose legislation that changes the composition of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Board of Directors (Metro), resulting in a reduction of Santa Clarita’s representation or influence with the Board of Directors.
- Support infrastructure legislation and grant funding for a state or federal investment in transportation, water resources, housing , and community development.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, infrastructure investment or grant applications that will bring program flexibility and funding beneficial to the City of Santa Clarita and unincorporated LA County.
- Support legislation or grant opportunities for local governments that provide funding for development or enhancing alternative fueling stations for vehicles.
- Monitor and influence legislation, regulatory proposals, or other actions regarding the proposed California High-Speed Rail Authority project; opposing alignment proposals that are not fully underground within the Palmdale to Burbank project section or otherwise negatively impact Santa Clarita residents and the community.
- Support legislation that directs a portion of Cap-and-Trade funds toward local transportation projects, excluding additional funds for high-speed rail.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, or administrative actions to support the decarbonizing of the economy and the hardening of electrical utility infrastructure to ensure reliable utility service and public safety and reduce the need for public safety power shutoffs.
- Support legislation designed to provide resources and relief to businesses related to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, or administrative actions that require a public health order issued by the State or County of Los Angeles, during the COVID19 pandemic State of Emergency, to strongly consider local data and input, rather than solely on statewide or countywide data.
- Support legislation, regulatory proposals, administrative actions, or public health orders to allow and support businesses remain open and operate at the capacity that will safely continue the economic recovery process.
- Advocate for the continued safe operations of all businesses using data and science.
Policy Making Principles
For the betterment of our business community, the SCV Chamber works with elected officials from across the political spectrum, irrelevant of political party affiliations.
The SCV Chamber has adopted a set of general principles that can be used to guide policymakers when faced with decisions regarding their constituents. The principles ask to 1) Engage the business community as a partner; 2) Make job creation and economic growth your top priority; 3) Consider the cumulative effects of taxes, fees, and regulations on job creation and economic growth; and 4) Open market for innovation.
Engage the business community as a partner.
Santa Clarita Valley’s business community has always been a source of dynamic leadership, problem-solving, and innovation. Before supporting or proposing solutions to issues, we urge you to reach out to us, so we can work together toward effective solutions. We are your constituents, we employ your constituents, and our collective success is a mutual proposition. Let’s work together from the start so together we can build stronger and more successful communities.
Make job creation and economic growth your top priority.
According to the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation, one in four children in Los Angeles County lives in poverty. While effective, accountable, fiscally responsible public programs are necessary short-term solutions to this crisis, the long-term solution must focus on creating good-paying jobs for your constituents that grow and sustain the economic vitality of our region.
Consider the cumulative effects of taxes, fees, and regulations on job creation and economic growth.
Over the years, our members have vocalized new taxes, fees, and regulations as their top concerns. In isolation, individual new tax, fee, or regulatory proposals might seem reasonable. However, the cumulative costs have become a hindrance to California’s economic success. We urge you to consider how each proposal that crosses your desk will add to or reduce the cumulative burden on the businesses that employ and sustain the quality of life for your constituents.
Open market for innovation.
Innovation, technology evolution, and consumer demand sometimes moves faster than the speed of government. Regulators and policymakers should encourage the market to innovate and grow while balancing affordability, reliability, cost-effectiveness, and the current state of technology for consumers.
Below are the contact details for Federal, State, County and Local elected officials representing the Santa Clarita Valley:
Congressman Mike Garcia
U.S. House of Representatives - CA 27th District
District Representative: Tami Stevens
23734 Valencia Blvd., Suite 301 | Santa Clarita, CA 91355
Senator Henry Stern
California State Senate - 27th District
District Representative: Jeremy Wolf
5016 N. Parkway Calabasas, Suite 222 | Calabasas, CA 91302
Senator Scott Wilk
California State Senate - 21st District
District Representative: Kris Hough
23920 Valencia Blvd, Suite 250 | Santa Clarita, CA 91355
Assemblywoman Pilar Schiavo
California State Assembly - 40th District
District Representative: Andrea Rosenthal
27441 Tourney Rd, Suite 160 | Santa Clarita, CA 91355
Assemblymember Tom Lackey
California State Assembly - 34th District
District Director: Pamela Balch
41319 12th St. W, Suite 105 | Palmdale CA, 03551
LA County Supervisor, Kathryn Barger
Board of Supervisors - 5th District
Field Representative: Stephanie English
27441 Tourney Rd., Suite 120 | Santa Clarita, CA 91355
City of Santa Clarita
Mayor Jason Gibbs, Mayor Pro-Tem Cameron Smyth
Councilmembers Marsha McLean, Bill Miranda, and Laurene Weste
23920 Valencia Blvd., Suite 300 | Santa Clarita, CA 91355
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