The Breakdown

Explaining Southern California's economy

In SoCal business news: Port of Long Beach considers pay package, Aereo to Supreme Court, fashion trucks

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72362 full

Good morning! Welcome to KPCC's business blog, The Breakdown. Every weekday, our staff compiles a list of interesting business stories in the region.

  • Port of Long Beach may consider increasing the salary of its executive director (Orange County Register). Doug Drummond, president of the Harbor Commission told the Register that the port may need to raise the $350,000 salary again to help it recruit candidates for the position. Other ports are also looking for new executive directors including the Port of Los Angeles, which could raise the competition for Long Beach.
  • Aereo warns, if the Supreme Court rules the company violated copyright law, it could lead to the crippling of the cloud computing industry  (Variety). Broadcast networks have complained about Aereo's business. When customers sign up to access network TV programming using online service Aereo, they're not paying the fees that cable and broadcast networks rely on for revenue--known as retransmission content. AirTalk has covered the debate behind this issue.
  • Gadget store Brookstone is planning to file for bankruptcy and is in discussions to be bought by Spencer Spirit Holdings Inc. (Wall Street Journal). Brookstone has roughly 20 stores in Southern California, according to its website.
  • Boston Global Investments plans to build a $3 billion project in the Canoga Park area (Los Angeles Daily News). Reporter Gregory J. Wilcox says plans include a hotel, a 5-acre park open to the public, along with office, retail and residential space. Wilcox says the development will take place at the Rocketdyne facility in Canoga Park and Aerojet Rocketdyne will leave the space.
  • Voters will decide whether Placentia can bring five large billboards that will raise $725,000 a year for the city, an amount equal to about half of its deficit (Orange County Register). Register reporter Louis Caisano Jr. says city officials suspect that Regency Outdoor Advertising is behind the opposition campaign, but Regency hasn't returned his calls.
  • Former L.A. film czar Tom Sherak was honored with the Pioneer of the Year award, the first person to win the award after death (Deadline). 
  • The auction for tools from the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station has begun (U-T San Diego). U-T San Diego reporter Morgan Lee says allen wrenches went for as low as $25, but the packing fees on large items like cranes and mills were more than $8,000. KPCC's Ben Bergman says there are no radioactive parts on sale.
  • You've heard about food trucks. Now, the latest trend is fashion trucks that drive around L.A. selling trendy clothing and accessories (Press-Telegram) Press-Telegram reporter Richard Guzman says the cost to start up a fashion truck is relatively low: $20,000 to $30,000.
  • There's hope for those of you who text while walking! Apple has filed a patent that could allow texters to see where they are going by using the back camera on their iPhone and display the image of what's ahead in the background of the text (CNET). This could come in handy. Once I almost walked into a pole, while trying to respond to a message.

Got business news? Tweet me @thewendylee.

Correction: An earlier version of this story included a photo incorrectly labeled Port of Long Beach. It was a photo of the Port of Los Angeles. The photo has been replaced with one that shows port containers. KPCC regrets the error.

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