This month the Chamber visited Aspen Helicopters with City Manager Greg Nyhoff, Police Chief Scott Whitney, and Chamber Chair Amy Fonzo. Charlie McLaughlin was the very accommodating host. Like most business visits, we learned a lot about the work Aspen does locally and throughout the U.S. In addition to support of our ag industry, they do a lot of work for the Navy, the Department of Forestry, and offer executive charters.
As well as the numerous sizes and capacities of helicopters, they also have a fleet of fixed-wing planes. In fact, they have a plane stationed in New Jersey whose job it is to fly a 100 square mile area over the Atlantic every month to track whales. When we visited, they also had a plane in South Dakota.
What we learned about the business was that they offer a variety of air services. They also employ a good number of people. Aspen has the same challenges as many other companies in that they find it quite difficult to find qualified workers.
The highlight of the visit was when McLaughlin offered to take us on a tour of Oxnard from the air. It is certainly amazing to see the city from a different perspective. We flew over the beautiful Embassy Suites Mandalay Beach Resort and then on to Channel Islands Harbor. We saw a ship being unloaded in the Port of Hueneme. Unfortunately, we also saw an encampment of homeless people near Ormond Beach.
This certainly was a business visit to remember.
The Chamber and City Manager visit a different business every month. The purpose is to make sure the city's management is in touch with our local businesses and the challenges they face. If you would like to host a future business visit, please let Chamber CEO Nancy Lindholm know.
Several bills supported by the California Chamber of Commerce to encourage local governments to approve new housing projects passed the Legislature on the last day of the session and are on their way to the Governor.
The bills either hold local governments accountable for meeting the housing elements of their plans or aim to combat the “not in my backyard” (NIMBY) resistance that can stall needed housing projects.
Now awaiting action by the Governor are:
AB 678 (Bocanegra; D-Pacoima): Promotes Local Agencies’ Compliance with the Housing Accountability Act. The bill seeks to ensure that local agencies comply with the provisions of the Act by requiring a local agency to make relevant findings if it denies a project, clarifying provisions of the Act, and imposing penalties on agencies that violate the Act.
AB 1515 (Daly; D-Anaheim): Stimulates Additional Housing Production. AB 1515 encourages housing project approvals by specifying that a housing development is deemed consistent with local plans and ordinances if there is substantial evidence such that a reasonable person could conclude that the project is consistent.
SB 167 (Skinner; D-Berkeley): Accountability of Local Agencies for Housing Development Project Decisions. The bill promotes accountability for decisions and approval of projects by imposing additional requirements on local agencies when disapproving or conditionally approving a project, and imposing penalties for violation of the Act.
Action NeededThe CalChamber is encouraging members to contact the Governor and ask him to sign AB 678, AB 1515 and SB 167.
Channel Islands Harbor will hosts its Annual Pumpkin Fun Day Oct. 29. The community is invited to join in the fun at the Channel Islands Harbor Farmers’ Market located in the north parking lot adjacent to Marine Emporium Landing, 3350 S. Harbor Blvd.
Bring the whole family for a day of fun. Various events will be taking place all day, including a decorating pop-up shop where children can make Halloween hats, trick-or-treating throughout the Farmers’ Market, and a costume parade and costume contest, with special prizes given to the winners. Other activities include face painting, live music and a bounce house. The costume parade will begin at 11:30 a.m. and the costume contest will start at noon.
The Farmers’ Market Pumpkin Fun Day is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Farmers Market office at 818-591-8161.
Channel Islands Harbor serves as a center of recreation, boating, shopping and water sports activities. The harbor is home to three yacht clubs and nine full-service marinas that provide berths for 2,150 boats. It also hosts the Channel Islands Maritime Museum. The museum is a cultural center dedicated to the interpretation of maritime history through interactive exhibits and educational outreach. For more information visit us at www.channelislandsharbor.org.
Now that our state legislators have completed their work in Sacramento for 2017, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin will address the Oxnard Chamber at its Knowledge & Networking luncheon on October 12. Attendees will hear about the tough decisions Ms. Irwin faced during a year of major issues. 2017 saw the passage of an historic transportation package (which means taxes as well as capital improvements), extension of the cap and trade program, numerous housing bills, and some controversial labor law proposals.
Jacqui Irwin was first elected in 2014 to represent California’s 44th Assembly District, which includes the cities of Camarillo, Moorpark, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village and the communities of Casa Conejo, Channel Islands Beach, El Rio, Lake Sherwood, Oak Park, and Santa Rosa Valley.
In her first term in the Assembly, Irwin successfully authored numerous pieces of legislation into law and brought vital state funds back to her community. Through her leadership funding was allocated for the creation of the CSU Channel Island School of Engineering and for innovation centers on UC campuses to transform UC research into products. Her legislation created tax-free savings accounts for the disabled, increased the cybersecurity of state agencies, and removed barriers for military service members seeking mental health services.
Assemblymember Irwin currently chairs the Veterans Affairs Committee, and is a member of the Agriculture Committee, Business & Professions Committee, Higher Education Committee, and the Privacy & Consumer Protection Committee.
Assemblymember Irwin also chairs the Assembly Select Committee on Cybersecurity, and Co-chairs the National Conference of State Legislatures Task Force on Cybersecurity. These roles have allowed her to help lead national and statewide efforts to improve our cybersecurity policies.
Her career in public service began on the Thousand Oaks City Council, where she was first elected in 2004. Irwin served two terms as mayor of Thousand Oaks. On the City Council she was a strong advocate for the preservation of open space and responsible development, while working tirelessly to ensure that families had a safe community.
Prior to her public service, Irwin was an employee of Teledyne Systems. She also worked as an engineer at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab.
She has been honored as Assemblymember of the Year by TechNet, the Woman of the Year for the Greater Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, the Champion for College Opportunity and Student Success by the Campaign for College Opportunity, and received the California Bear Award for her service to the California National Guard.
Assemblymember Irwin holds a Bachelor of Science in Systems Engineering from UC San Diego. While earning her degree Irwin was an All-American swimmer and competed in the national championships all four years. A proud mother of three young adults, Jacqui Irwin and her husband Jon have lived in Thousand Oaks for nearly 20 years.
In addition to her work in the Assembly, Irwin has been appointed by the Assembly Speaker to serve on the Governor’s Military Council, the Commission on the Status of Women and Girls, the State Public Works Board, the Inter-Agency Council on Veterans, and the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children.
The October 12 Knowledge & Networking lunch will be held at the Residence Inn at River Ridge on Vineyard Avenue with California State University Channel Islands as our sponsor. Advance reservations are requested and are discounted for members through October 9. Log onto the Chamber's website to make a reservation or call the office at 805-983-6118.
The Military Appreciation Dinner may be an annual event for the Oxnard Chamber, but it is a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence for the enlisted personnel being honored. The entire affair would certainly not be possible without the support of some very generous businesses and organizations. We would like to sincerely thank the sponsors of the 20th annual Military Appreciation Dinner.
AMS Craig, LLC
California State University Channel Islands
Centers for Family Health
Clear Channel Outdoor
Glovis America, Inc.
Marriott International Government Travel
Port of Hueneme
Residence Inn & Courtyard by Marriott
DCH Auto Group
Holiday Inn Express Port Hueneme
Oxnard College Foundation
River Ridge Golf Club
St. John's Regional Medical Center / Dignity Health
Other Essential Sponsors:
Kirby Auto Group (Commemorative Wine Glass Sponsor)
Oxnard Convention & Visitors Bureau (Awardees' Gift Sponsor)
Ventura County Lodging Association (Commemorative Program Sponsor)
In addition, we are grateful to Magnavino Cellars and Rancho Ventavo Cellars for donating wine for the dinner. We would also like to acknowledge Garden Acres Santa Claus (Santa to the Sea) and Bill Gallaher for sponsoring enlisted personnel to attend the event.
It is truly inspirational to see how much our community embraces the local military presence and the Americans who step forward to defend our freedoms. Thank you all!!