Explaining Southern California's economy

FAA awards another grant to Inglewood to help soften LAX jet noise

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An airplane lands at LAX.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters says the Federal Aviation Administration has approved a $10- million grant to help the City of Inglewood reduce the impact of noise from LAX. 

For years, the FAA and Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), the agency that oversees LAX, have supported the efforts of neighboring communities like El Segundo and Inglewood to mitigate airplane noise. Each year since 2011, the FAA has given LAWA at least $10 million to fund the soundproofing of Inglewood homes. 

A statement from Congresswoman Water's office says this grant will cover the soundproofing of about 480 Inglewood homes.  

"You put in soundproof doors, you put in double pane windows and you maybe put in more insulation," says aviation consultant Jack Keady. "I think in almost every case, there’s a clearly measured decrease in all kinds of noise." 


LA's bad roads: Why you're spending an extra $2,485 a year, study says

Traffic Congestion Costs Motorists Extra 38 Hrs A Week And Hundreds Of Dollars

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Traffic on the northbound and southbound lanes of the 110 Harbor Freeway starts to stack up during rush hour traffic on February 5, 2013 in Los Angeles. According to a report, the average L.A. driver loses 61 hours delayed in traffic. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

David McNew/Getty Images

The existing Gerald Desmond Bridge which carries traffic over the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, is being replaced to allow the world's largest cargo ships to access births at the Port of Long Beach. Construction is expected to be finished in 2016.

If you drive in Los Angeles, you are spending $2,485 extra each year because of bad roads.

That's one key finding in a report released Thursday morning by TRIP, a national transportation research group based in Washington and sponsored in part by construction companies and labor unions.

The report takes a hard look at the conditions of the Golden State's roadways and bridges and what that means for the motorists who use them. It estimates that drivers in Los Angeles are spending an extra $2,485 each year because of a deficient transportation system. 

"That’s the cost of driving on rough roads beating up your vehicle," says Rocky Moretti, TRIP's Director of Research and Policy. "That’s the cost of delays due to traffic congestion, and also the cost of serious traffic crashes as a result of driving on roads that oftentimes don’t have all the safety features that they should."  


Los Angeles job growth falling behind other cities, study says

Job Seekers Look For Open Positions At Career Fair In San Francisco

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Since the recession, Los Angeles has been adding jobs at a similar clip as California. But L.A. has a lot of catching up to do because it lost so many more jobs during the recession.

The Los Angeles economy continues to recover from the Great Recession, but not nearly fast enough to keep up with other major cities, according to the latest forecast released Thursday from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management.

Both California and U.S. payrolls have now surpassed their pre-recession peaks, but not L.A. payrolls. About 4,191,000 people are employed in the county, which is 0.9 percent below the peak; 1,585,000 people are employed in the city, which is 2.3 percent off the peak. 

In fact, the study finds that more people were employed all the way back in 1990 than are now, even though almost half a million more people live here.

Since the recession, the city has been adding jobs at a similar clip as California, but L.A. has a lot of catching up to do because it lost so many more jobs during the recession.


Hiring in Los Angeles expected to lag rest of state

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Marlith/Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons)

A new survey finds increased hiring, especially in the fields of leisure and hospitality, mining, and wholesale and retail trade. Locally, salespeople and trade-technicians are in especially high demand

15-percent of companies in greater Los Angeles say they will be hiring more employees in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared to 21-percent of companies statewide, according to a survey of thousands of companies by the staffing firm Manpower.

“In talking to employers, we certainly across the board are finding companies that are more ambitious that are looking at the talent they need as they go in 2015, talking about plans of expansion and growth,” said Carol Schenk, regional director for Manpower.

That means increased hiring, especially in the fields of leisure and hospitality, mining, and wholesale and retail trade. Locally, salespeople and trade-technicians are in especially high demand.

“If you have a skill set as a CMC programmer or a machinist, you have many, many choices available,” said Schenk.


Hollywood studios charged with agreeing not to poach visual effects workers

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Dreamworks Entertainment

The Shrek series is mentioned in a lawsuit claiming Dreamworks Animation and other studios agreed not to poach visual effects workers from each other

Dreamworks, Disney and other studios are the targets of a new lawsuit alleging the companies agreed not to poach each others’ visual effects artists. 

In a complaint filed in federal court in San Jose, plaintiff Robert A. Nitsch, Jr. also names Pixar, Lucasfilm, Digital Domain 3.0, ImageMovers, ImageMovers Digital, Sony Pictures Animation and Sony Pictures Imageworks.  The complaint says the studios "secretly agreed to work together to deprive thousands of their workers of better wages and opportunities to advance their careers at other companies."  


Nitsch, according to the complaint, was a Senior Character Effects Artist at DreamWorks Animation from 2007 to 2011 and a Technical Director at Sony Pictures Imageworks during 2004 and is now a resident of Massachusetts.