A Report to Hollywood’s Business Community HOLLYWOOD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Working for a Better Hollywood It is no accident that Hollywood is continuing to rebound. Many years of work by the Hollywood CHA MBER OF COM MERCE Chamber of Commerce and other committed Hollywood boosters has brought energy back to one of the most famous communities in the world. These changes do not just happen organically. They require strong advocacy to foster an environment that will encourage revitalization. Advocacy has been the guiding principle for many years at the Chamber as we have worked to advance Hollywood’s agenda and create a positive business climate for our members. With new challenges on the horizon, it is important that we continue our efforts. Take a look at the issues and projects
The Chamber is Creating a Strong Local Economy The 21st annual Hollywood Economic Development Summit focused on Why Hollywood Matters and featured a keynote address by Victor Coleman, chairman of the board at Hudson Pacific Properties. The Chamber worked to build support for a new business improvement district east of the freeway that would be known as the Hollywood-Western BID. The fourth annual State of the Entertainment Industry Conference garnered an enthusiastic crowd to hear how film incentives are working, the latest trends in music and the new multiplatform TV industry. Roy Price of Amazon Studios was presented with the Commitment to California Award. The Chamber hosted a meeting with leaders of the six Hollywoodarea neighborhood councils to foster better communication between the business community and residents. The Healthcare Committee of the Chamber was relaunched and set numerous goals to support one of Hollywood’s major employment sectors. Numerous proposed developments in Hollywood were supported by the Chamber and members testified at hearings on their behalf. In particular, the Chamber worked to clear the way for Hollywood’s half-built Target to resume construction.
2015-16 Soaring with the Eagles
Hello Hollywood! I am absolutely humbled and honored to be serving as the Chair of Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. I am not a native “Hollywoodian” or Angelino, but I have been privileged to live and work in many different communities, and the common denominator is, regardless of where we live or work, it’s our responsibility to take care of our community. This is no ordinary Chamber of Commerce. We represent one of the most special business communities in the world. We accomplish projects with both style and substance. Hollywood is the platform where all dreams come true! There are several ongoing issues with which the Chamber is grappling. Critical and entrenched problems can seldom be resolved over the course of one chair’s term of office. I pledge that the Chamber will continue to devote resources to these priorities, including: • CEQA reform. While the goals of CEQA are laudable, we all know that special interests have used CEQA as a battering ram to hold developers hostage. The Chamber will continue to seek action that will protect the original intent of CEQA but allow critically-needed infill projects to proceed. • The Neighborhood Integrity Initiative will cause severe damage to the economy of Los Angeles. This anti-growth initiative must be defeated and the Chamber will continue to be part of the coalition working to defeat it. • The Hollywood Community Plan needs to be adopted and implemented to protect the community and to give developers more certainty as to what they can build. The Chamber will continue to press for action to bring the plan forward. • The shortage of housing remains one of the most intractable problems in Los Angeles. The Chamber will work to get housing projects approved and built and encourage the inclusion of affordable housing wherever possible. Other ongoing issues will also receive Chamber attention, including continuing to press for changes to improve the visitor experience on Hollywood Blvd., and reaching out to improve relations with our neighborhoods. While we’ve made some progress, we’re going to push hard this year to build on the success of 2015. Yes, there are many obstacles in front of us, but nothing distracts from our mission. We have faced many difficult issues before. We have faced moments of tumult and moments of change. We know what to do and how to succeed. Phenomenal growth in the past decade is a proof of this! The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce will continue to be a channel for connecting members with resources. A catalyst for job and business growth which will benefit our business and neighborhood growth well into the future. Thank you for the opportunity to serve among so many gifted leaders. You are the Eagles in the sky. I am proud to be soaring with you. Dr. Fariba Kalantari Chair of the Board, 2016-17
Senator Allen Visit
De Leon Meeting in Sacramento
Hollywood Chamber Committees 2016-2017 The Arts, Entertainment & Emerging Media (TEAM) Susan Cabral Ebert, Make-Up Artists & Hair Stylists Local 706 IATSE Maricela Gomez, Paramount Pictures Budget & Audit Donelle Dadigan, Hollywood Museum Economic Development Dwayne Gathers, Gathers Strategies, Inc. Timothy Grubbs Entertainment Conference Sharon Keyser, Paramount Pictures Doug Troy, Trailer Park Hollywood Chamber Community Foundation Beth Marlis, Musicians Institute Health Care Manny Rodriguez, La Fuente Hollywood Treatment Center Sam Smith, Genesis Financial Heroes of Hollywood Cindy Braun, Paley Center for Media Carole Sarian, The CrisCom Company Hollywood Chamber PAC Mark Edwards, Mark R. Edwards Consulting Group Hollywood Ed Jon Clayden, Emerson College HYPE (Hollywood Young Professionals & Entrepreneurs) Brandon Mason, Avison Young Legislative Action Matt Fritch, Andrews International Mark Edwards, Mark R. Edwards Consulting Group Licensing Mitch Nedick, The CW Network Membership Jeff Zarrinnam, Hollywood Hotel – the Hotel of Hollywood Project Review Committee Bill Roschen, Roschen Van Cleve Architects Tourism Donelle Dadigan, Hollywood Museum Patti MacJennett, L.A. Convention & Tourism Board Walk of Fame Vin Di Bona, Vin Di Bona Productions/Fishbowl Worldwide
A briefing on the Los Angeles bid to host the 2024 Olympics was sponsored by the Chamber, as we investigated ways that Hollywood could be involved should the City win the Olympics. Several meetings were hosted by the Chamber to educate members on how to comply with the City’s new Energy Efficiency Mandate to reduce energy and water usage. Chamber President & CEO Leron Gubler’s blog, It’s All About Jobs, continued to gain readership and was picked up by several other information platforms.
The Chamber is Promoting Hollywood A total of 28 Walk of Fame ceremonies were organized and publicized by the Hollywood Chamber, beginning with music legend Jeff Lynne and ending with a crowd numbering in the of thousands for actor Eugenio Derbez, generating worldwide exposure for Hollywood. A walking tour of Hollywood development was given by Chamber President & CEO Leron Gubler to 50 bankers in town for the national Community Reinvestment Act Conference. A Media Welcome Center was again hosted by the Chamber at the TCL Chinese Theatre for more than 75 press representatives coming to Hollywood to cover the Academy Awards. A new Hollywood Guide and Hollywood Business Profile, with the latest demographic information was published and distributed to 25,000 homes and businesses. The Chamber’s education collaborative, Hollywood Ed, created a Student Discount Card for students attending Hollywood’s numerous trade schools to patronize Chamber businesses. A Healthy Hollywood Resource Guide was created by the Chamber’s new Healthcare Committee, to promote healthcare-related members of the Chamber. Numerous ribbon-cutting ceremonies were held for Chambermember businesses.
The Chamber is Offering Opportunities to Network and Promote Your Business The Hollywood Expo was held at the Hollywood Palladium, celebrating its 75th anniversary, and drew a crowd of nearly 500 people.
Monthly mixers were held at some of Hollywood’s most popular entertainment venues, including: Asa Meza, Umami Burger, Raleigh Studios, Dave & Busters, Greenleaf Chop House, Mama Shelter, Hard Rock Universal Studios, and Yamashiro.
Walk of Fame
Bankers Tour Hollywood
Each month, the Chamber emailed out Hollywood Hot Deals and Businesses You Need to Know, to help our members generate business with other members. Speed Leads, our popular networking luncheon, was held bimonthly and helped members gain new leads and friends in a nonthreatening business environment. The Chamber launched a monthly Tech 101 series of seminars to educate members on the latest technology, with information on such topics as Gameification, how to be found online, Microsoft One Note, CRM and Social Media, etc. Hundreds of Chamber members had an opportunity for involvement and to make new connections at the dozens of Chamber committee meetings held throughout the year. The Chamber outreached to the Millennial generation through HYPE (the Hollywood Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs).
The Chamber is Representing the Interests of Business With Government Chamber representatives met individually with members of the L.A. City Council urging sensitivity to the needs of small businesses and nonprofit organizations in considering a hike in the minimum wage. Despite Chamber efforts, the City enacted an increase in the wage to $15 an hour by 2020, although an extra year was approved for businesses with 25 or fewer employees. Chamber members testified at hearings across the City on the proposal to allow street vending in Los Angeles. The Chamber urged that an “optout” alternative be approved to allow business improvement districts to decide whether street vending should be allowed within their boundaries. The City delayed action on the proposal as a result of the reservations that were expressed by the Chamber and other organizations. CEQA reform of the California Environmental Quality Act was encouraged by the Chamber. A meeting was held with State Senate President ProTempore Kevin DeLeon to discuss steps that might be taken to fix some of the most egregious problems with CEQA.
Hollywood Chamber Community Foundation Beth Marlis, Chair 2016-17
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION
One of the unique features of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce is its efforts to support local community non-profit organizations. As a 501c3 nonprofit association, contributions to the Chamber Foundation are tax deductible. Checks should be written to the “Chamber Community Foundation” and sent to the Chamber. The Foundation holds two fundraising events annually – the Heroes of Hollywood Luncheon (formerly called the Women of Distinction Luncheon) and the All Hallows Eve Party at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. All net proceeds go to charity. Since its inception in 1996, the foundation has given out $799,160 in grants, and this past year awarded $52,250. In our most recent fiscal year, the Chamber foundation assisted the following local organizations: ArtworxLA Assistance League of Southern Cal. Blind Children’s Center Boys & Girls Club of Hollywood Childhelp, Inc. Greenways Arts Alliance Hollywood Fringe Festival Hatchery Arts Hollywood Wilshire YMCA L.A. City College Foundation L.A. Contemporary Exhibitions Let’s Play Hollywood Foundation Los Angeles Youth Network LOVE Foundation My Friend’s Place National Night Out New Filmmakers L.A. Oasis of Hollywood St. Barnabas Senior Services Streetlights The Center at Blessed Sacrament The Gabriella Foundation Theatre West We Can Pediatric Tumor Network
The Chamber testified in support of the proposed Crenshaw Line extension to Hollywood as part of the Metro long-range transit plan and voiced support for Metro’s November 2016 initiative to expand the Metro transit system. Numerous public officials met with the Chamber throughout the year to discuss public policy issues, including State Senators Kevin DeLeon and Ben Allen, L.A. City CAO Miguel Santana, City Attorney Mike Feuer, City Councilmembers Mitch O’Farrell and David Ryu, and others.
Foundation Grant Presentations
Our Business Agenda As you review our Report to Hollywood’s Business Community, you will see that it was a year filled with advocacy efforts by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce on behalf of our members. While it is always good to review our accomplishments, I’m already looking forward to the challenges and opportunities facing us in our new fiscal year. Certainly at the top of my list would be the Neighborhood Integrity Initiative (NII). While I understand the concerns of the proponents with the L.A. planning process, this is not the best way to achieve meaningful reform. A two-year building moratorium directed by the NII would result in the loss of thousands of jobs and could send the local economy into a tailspin. Mayor Garcetti has already responded by budgeting millions more to speed the update of local community plans. There is no way that the City could update all community plans in the timeframe of the initiative. Proponents should declare “victory” and drop the initiative. Our Chamber will be actively involved in the effort to defeat the initiative if it qualifies for the March 2017 ballot. Last year, we were very involved in the issue of sidewalk vending. Our efforts, as well as those of other opponents, managed to delay final consideration of the issue by the City Council. When it comes back again, we will again reiterate our opposition to opening all sidewalks in the City to street vending. A more measured approach would be to allow neighborhoods to decide if they want street vending, and to allow business improvement districts to “opt-out”. In November, Metro is likely to put forward a ballot measure to add another half- cent sales tax to expedite construction of our mass transit system. This is an investment for the future of our region. The Hollywood Chamber has been a strong proponent of mass transit and will be supporting this measure. Of special interest to us is that the long-range plan that would be funded by the initiative includes an extension of the Crenshaw Line through West Hollywood and connecting to the Hollywood & Highland Metro station, a link that will benefit our area.
CHA MBER OF COM MERCE
7018 Hollywood Boulevard Hollywood, California 90028 Main (323)469-8311 Fax (323)469-2805 email@example.com www.HollywoodChamber.net www.WalkOfFame.com
Since 1921... Promoting and enhancing the business, cultural and civic well-being of the greater Hollywood community.
The Chamber met with hillside representatives to discuss issues related to the Hollywood Sign and traffic spilling into the neighborhoods as a result. Chamber representatives participated in annual lobbying trips on local business issues and in support of the proposed Hollywood Central Park to Washington, D.C. and Sacramento. State Senator Kevin DeLeon delivered his first State of the State address to the Hollywood Chamber at Paramount Pictures. The Chamber spoke out against the proposed Neighborhood Integrity Initiative as a job-killing measure that would increase congestion. Chamber President & CEO Leron Gubler participated in a townhall meeting sponsored by the Studio District Neighborhood Council to discuss the issue.
The Chamber is Taking Political Action The Hollywood Chamber Political Action Committee interviewed the finalists for Council District 4, Carolyn Ramsey and David Ryu, and decided to remain neutral in the race. The PAC had previously sponsored a debate between the candidates. A fundraiser in support of the re-election of Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell was hosted by the Hollywood Chamber PAC.
The Chamber is Giving Back to the Community
We look forward to again working for you in the coming year.
The 5th annual Heroes of Hollywood Luncheon was held at the Taglyan Center to raise funds to support Hollywood nonprofit organizations. Laura Dern attended to accept the Mary Pickford Award for her mother Diane Ladd, while Tom LaBonge was presented with the Johnny Grant Community Service Award.
Leron Gubler President & CEO
The Chamber Foundation awarded nearly $40,000 in grants to local Hollywood community nonprofit organizations.
Finally, the City has brought forward the revised Hollywood Community Plan. Final adoption is not expected until 2017, but there is no doubt that it is needed. We currently are operating under a plan that is nearly 30 years old. The new plan will protect our single family neighborhoods and guide density to the areas surrounding our mass transit stations, which is where it should go.
CHA MBER OF COM MERCE
Flowers were placed on the stars of past Walk of Fame honorees who passed away during the year. The Chamber sponsored its annual Police and Firefighters Appreciation BBQ and fed several hundred of Hollywood’s public safety officals to show the community’s support for their sacrifices. An enthusiastic crowd attended the Chamber Foundation’s annual All Hallows Eve fundraiser at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, which raised thousands of dollars for the Foundation’s grant program.
New Members Welcomed
Chamber President & CEO Leron Gubler served as a judge at American Legion Post 43’s hosting of the statewide speech contest finals for high school students.