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  • Archive for July 22nd, 2011

    Jul 22

    NLRB ACTIONS GIVE RISE TO CONGRESSIONAL PUSHBACK AND CONCERN

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    From our friends at ICSC:  The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has grabbed headlines in recent months for its far-reaching attempt to mandate where and how one company—Boeing—can operate and expand its business. On July 21, the House Education and Workforce Committee passed “The Protecting Jobs from Government Interference Act,” a bill aimed at barring the government from dictating where companies can do business—taking direct aim at the NLRB’s complaint that Boeing Co. illegally shifted work from union plants in Washington State to a new nonunion facility in South Carolina. The vote was along party lines and it is unclear when it may be brought up by the full House.

    Jul 22

    REDISTRICTING MAPS RELEASED

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    The California Citizens’ Redistricting Commission presented and approved its draft of redistricting maps. Click here to see the new maps.

    Jul 22

    INDUSTRY URGES DEBT NEGOTIATORS TO DROP CARRIED INTEREST TAX HIKE

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    A large coalition of national real estate groups,  (including ICSC, BOMA, NAIOP, CCIM among others), are strongly urging Congress and White House negotiators to drop the notion of using the Carried Interest Tax Hike as part of the final deal.  From the press release:

    “The undersigned real estate organizations urge Congress to reject an increase in taxes on partnership carried interest that would encumber job creation and halt economic recovery. In an attempt to help close the budget deficit, lawmakers are considering treating carried interest as ordinary income (taxed at up to 35 percent) rather than as capital gain (subject to a top rate of 15 percent).”

    “Such an increase could derail a real estate recovery by disproportionately impacting small to medium sized real estate partnerships that rely on carried interest to make up for the substantial risks and liabilities associated with long-term real estate ownership and development.”

    The August 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling is fast approaching and House Republicans and the Obama Administration have yet to make much progress in reaching a final agreement.  The White House and Congressional Democrats continue to argue in favor of spending cuts and closing various tax “loopholes” in a final deal, which may include carried interest.

    Thank you to all members that have called your members of Congress to educate them on the devastating impacts the Carries Interest Tax Hike would have on our already struggling industry.

    Jul 22

    400′ TRAVEL DISTANCE/SMOKE REMOVAL FIRE OPERATIONS

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    The Building Standards Commission has approved the State Fire Marshal Rulemaking to modify the 400′ travel distance and smoke removal for fire operations.  This process was started by our industry pointing out that under the last state adoption of the national codes large new industrial buildings would have been limited to being no more than 250’ deep.  This limitation would have hurt warehousing operations and development in California.  Members of several NAIOP chapters and companies brought the issue to the attention of their Sacramento lobbyists, funded a technical study, and worked over the course of a year to convince regulators to change the code.  This would not have been a success without the industrywide collaboration and hard work on this effort. 

    This code will be effective July 1, 2012.  However, locals will be educated and encouraged to consider this as acceptable alternative to existing code via Section 108 (approval of alternate methods).

    Jul 22

    REDEVELOPMENT LAWSUIT FILED IN CALIFORNIA

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    The California Redevelopment Agency Association and the California League of Cities have filed a lawsuit to overturn the part of the recently passed budget that effectively eliminated Redevelopment Agencies. Arguing the action violates Proposition 22, which specifically prevents State diversions of redevelopment funds, the groups say that without court action, vital local economic revitalization and job-creation projects will die. CBPA and a broad coalition of groups have opposed elimination of Redevelopment and continue to support the effort. Click here for details.

    Jul 22

    SENATE SELECT COMMITTEE ON ENERGY EFFICIENY – COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    This week several members of the commercial real estate industry participated in stakeholder meetings sponsored Senator Kevin de Leon (D – Los Angeles) chair of the Senate Select Committee on Energy Efficiency.  The events were well attended by an array of groups including environmental and green building organizations, union representatives, commercial real estate, and policymakers from the Legislature, Governor’s Office, and regulatory agencies.

    Much of the discussion focused on a recently release CA Public Utilities Commission Report entitled, “Energy Efficiency Financing in California; Needs and Gaps.”

    As we have reported several times, under legislation passed two years ago (AB 758) state regulators are laboring to establish policy that will induce Zero Net Energy in all new commercial buildings in California by 2030, and 50% of existing buildings.

    The report and meeting focused on ways that the State can accelerate the scope of commercial retrofits in California with regulatory reductions; incentives; and/or financing options.

    Ideas being discussed range from “on-bill” financing, to energy service agreements, Commercial PACE programs, to utilizing public funds to form loan-loss reserves and/or other credit enhancing mechanisms, including the notions of loan guarantees and tax credits.

    The commercial real estate industry must be involved in these discussions.  You know your business and how to make these policy changes in a way that will allow our industry to climb out of this economic downturn.   We will keep you updated as we continue to work with the Senator, the CEC and the CPUC, but ask that you read the report above and the one below (last story) and continue to provide input and be engaged.

    Jul 22

    BUSINESS GROUPS RESPOND TO LA MAYOR CALL FOR SPLIT ROLL

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    Business groups in Los Angeles, including BOMA Greater Los Angeles, have joined together to denounce Mayor Villaraigosa’s recent call to dismantle Proposition 13 protections for commercial real estate to create a split roll that will increase the property tax burden on all businesses. The letter reads, in part:

    “Even more disconcerting is the fact that you suggested raising taxes on commercial and business properties as just the first change to Proposition 13. Homeowners across the state would undoubtedly be next. You said the trick is to convince voters that higher property taxes are in their self-interest — voters know better, higher taxes mean higher prices. They know that if we want to see jobs return to California, we need to focus on policies that create them, not destroy them.”

    Click here to see a copy of the letter.

    Jul 22

    30 GROUPS AND COMPANIES JOINED NO ON AB 350 THIS WEEK. DID YOU?

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    AB 350 is one of the most far-reaching pieces of legislation to impact the commercial property industry in a long time. Under AB 350, any time a service provider gets a new contract, they will be forced to hire the prior contractor’s employees. That’s right, this bill isn’t limited to the sale of the building, it applies to any new service contract. We won’t win this fight without the support of the entire industry. Please join the growing voice of opposition to this bill by signing up here.