Stories for December 2008
Wednesday, December 31
California State Controller John Chiang sent a letter to all state agencies stating that beginning in February, billions of dollars of expenditures could end up being paid with individual registered warrants, better known as IOUs.
Walter Mosher will continue to serve on the board of directors of Precision Dynamics Corp. as part of a settlement of legal actions Mosher took against the company that he helped start.
Individual officers of a company may be held personally liable as operators of industrial facilities, such as underground tanks, according to a ruling by the Third District Court of Appeal.
Moderates on the Screen Actors Guild board are frustrated at the stalemate in contract talks with Hollywood studios that has left the union in limbo. The move could undermine the guild's leadership.
Food & wine to ring in 2009
WASHINGTON -- The number of newly laid off workers signing up for unemployment benefits fell sharply last week but those continuing to draw aid climbed to the highest level since 1982.
Improvements in operational efficiency and products contributed to Vitesse Semiconductor Corp. completing its fiscal 2008 year in the black.
Tuesday, December 30
Fox wants to block Warner's release of the film version of the famed graphic novel.
The U.S. average drops 4 cents in the last week to $1.613 a gallon. California's average climbs 0.4 cent to $1.810. Some groups blame refiners for a reduction in stockpiles.
The Valley Economic Development Center received a $1 million loan from Merrill Lynch that will be used to assist small business.
Monday, December 29
PALMDALE - The latest episode in the cyclical story of passenger air service from L.A./Palmdale Regional Airport came to a close in 2008, as United Airlines became the most recent airline to cancel service.
AM Oil Resources & Technology Inc. will begin construction on portable equipment to more efficiently take oil out of the ground, the company announced.
The amount reimbursed to workers for business-related driving will drop in the new year, the Internal Revenue Service announced.
Teledyne Technologies Inc. acquired the assets of a company that makes data loading equipment and software used by the commercial and military airline industries.
State Board of Equalization sends letters advising service companies to check out-of-state purchases for the last three years or risk an audit.
Loved ones who lost 17-year-old Nataline Sarkisyan in 2007 reveal their plans for litigation.
Wednesday, December 24
First California Financial Group Inc. in Westlake Village was among seven California banks receiving money from the government bailout of the financial industry.
Warner Bros. Television filed a lawsuit against CBS Television over money the studio says is owed from the hit sitcom "Two and Half Men."
The short-term loan stores are proliferating in suburban areas as the economy worsens. Critics say they trap the working poor with steep interest rates; lenders say they provide a needed service.
Tuesday, December 23
Americans are likely to spend up to nearly 4% less than last year, national trade group says.
The Tulare County District Attorney is seeking a preliminary injunction against a Camarillo fire protection equipment company under investigation by a state agency into allegations of pressuring businesses into unnecessary inspections and maintenance.
MOJAVE - In a much-anticipated milestone in the march towards commercial space tourism, Virgin Galactic's WhiteKnightTwo carrier aircraft completed its first flight Sunday morning.
Electro Rent Corp. reported flat revenue growth and a 39 percent decrease in net income for the second quarter despite having rented out more electronic test equipment, personal computers and servers compared to a year ago.
WASHINGTON -- The economy was shrinking in the summer and corporate profits were falling even before the financial crisis struck with full force. Analysts are forecasting that those small declines will be followed by much larger decreases this quarter as
The Screen Actors Guild has delayed a strike authorization vote by its membership to give the union's national board time to discuss the matter.
Monday, December 22
Guest columnist Richard Rosenberg writes about new wage law rulings
The board of insurance holding company Unico authorized a stock repurchase program to acquire up to 500,000 shares of its outstanding common stock.
Kaiser Panorama City donated $1 million in surplus equipment that was distributed to local health organizations
CALABASAS, CA-Countrywide Home Loans Inc. has sold an 86,000-square-foot office building here to Agoura Hills, CA-based DTS Inc. for $15.6 million in a short-term sale-leaseback. The office building, at 5220 Las Virgenes Rd., will serve as the new corpora
A reduction in car volume and fewer paint and body shops contributed to Earl Scheib Inc. widening its net loss in the second quarter when compared with the previous year.
VICA honored locals at its 2008 annual meeting
The Mayor of Palmdale and the Dean of Pepperdine's Graziadio School of Business write about growing the Antelope Valley's business base
Old Town Camarillo gets a major facelift. Downtown commercial center created
Despite Beverly Garland's passing, the hotel will retain her name
A spring completion is expected for the Camarillo Promenade, the expansion of the popular Premium Outlets mall on the city's south side.
Reporter Linda Coburn on the mainstreaming of sustainability
Officials with Workforce Connection say the center will have 25,000 visitors from July to June.
Stock activity for 50 selected greater San Fernando Valley-based public companies: Bi-Weekly Top Gainers, Losers; The Valley 50 Stock Index; 52-week Performance; Market Summary / Indexes
Follow-up on multiple industry stories covered throughout the year
An analysis of how the Valley economy weathered the economic storm.
Interview with John Notter, founder and owner of Westlake Village Inn which is celebrating 40 years in business
A subsidiary of Teledyne Technologies Inc. has acquired a Louisiana company that designs and manufacturers hydrographic survey instruments.
LANCASTER - A plan to build a recycled water distribution system in the Antelope Valley took another step forward last week when county leaders gave their approval to start work on a water "backbone" that will connect water processing plants in Palmdale a
Owner also hopes to put health spa at the Hummingbird Nest Ranch
A hankering for pizza, fruit pies and coffee helps get the word out on the "Be the U" marketing campaign at California State University Channel Islands.
NEW YORK -- If you're looking for an extra bargain before the holidays, you may only have to ask.
Editor Jason Schaff reports on a recent Valley College business forum
Friday, December 19
Thursday, December 18
NEW YORK -- A private research group's measure of the economy's health fell again in November and its six-month rate of decline hit the worst level since 1991.
PALMDALE - Silicon Valley tycoon and state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner said leaders need to make lemonade out of the state's financial lemons.
Online box office tracking firm Box Office Mojo has been acquired by IMDb.com Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon.com.
Electronics manufacturer Stellar Microelectronics has started a new apprenticeship program aimed at military veterans.
A growing number of companies are sending workers a grim holiday message: Head for the unemployment line.
Wednesday, December 17
The collapse of the U.S. auto industry contributed to manufacturer Special Devices Inc. to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
A Thousand Oaks family lost out on their chance to appear on the television game show "Opportunity Knocks" because of the city's strict filming standards.
The death of a board member for engineering and test services firm National Technical Systems Inc. has led NASDAQ to notify the company of noncompliance with independent director requirements.
Five years after selling Innovative Merchant Solutions to Intuit, Joe Kaplan leaves the company at the end of the month.
Tuesday, December 16
Cracks are beginning to emerge within the Screen Actors Guild as the union prepares to go to its members for a strike authorization.
The Walt Disney Co. will begin broadcasting in Russia in 2009 with its own branded channel in partnership with Media-One Holdings Ltd.
WASHINGTON -- A record plunge in consumer prices in November puts pressure on the Federal Reserve to act decisively to guard against a debilitating bout of deflation.
Tests have uncovered radioactive contaminants in an open-air burn pit, already rife with chemical pollutants, at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory, according to state regulatory officials.
The Thousand Oaks Police Department is seeking to purchase three new motorcycles from a Long Beach dealership after a local dealer failed to submit a competitive bid, officials say.
Raffi's, which began as a take-out spot, has grown up and needs more room, owner says.
Monday, December 15
GOP lawmakers and business groups say changes in workplace rules are needed to keep employers in California, generating tax revenue. But Democrats and labor groups refuse to go along.
Despite weakening sales and gloomy economic forecasts, downtown Ventura property owners are advancing efforts to create a special assessment district to pay for marketing, security, maintenance and other improvements.
Engineering test services firm National Technical Systems Inc. reported an 82 percent increase in net income for the third quarter when compared with the previous year.
The Los Angeles Times will offer detailed listings of auto and real estate ads to mobile devices through Woodland Hills-based mobile marketing firm Gumiyo.
PALMDALE - The secrets of the universe may be closer at hand when an airborne infrared telescope takes to the skies in initial flights next year.
David Swartz, a partner at Good Swartz Brown & Berns, A Division of J.H. Cohn has been reappointed to serve on the State Board of Accountancy.
Emergency rooms are becoming crowded as more people lose their health benefits.
The City of Los Angeles prevailed in their fight against the developers of the controversial Las Lomas real estate development project when a Los Angeles Superior Court judge rejected all of the developer's arguments for re-opening review of the project.
Friday, December 12
Some strip malls might look like they're on the verge of becoming ghost towns, with troubled retailers shuttering anchor stores across Ventura County.
Group says it will distribute signs with disconnecting number, give out iPhones.
WASHINGTON -- Consumers reduced their spending at retail stores again in November while the costs of goods before they reach store shelves also continued to drop, more bad signs in a recession that appears to be deepening.
KB Toys filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, indicating that it would immediately begin going-out-of-business sales in all of its locations.
The Alavarez Firm, a Westlake Village law practice, has taken on American Beauty Boats Inc. as a new client.
Thursday, December 11
Ceres Inc. has started sales of seeds to grow raw materials for biofuels and biopower, the company announced.
The State of California has attained a $7.8 million federal grant to expand counseling services for homeowners, in addition to the $8 million federal grant it was awarded earlier this year.
Real estate developer Dan Palmer has resigned as president of the Las Lomas Land Company, LLC.
Wednesday, December 10
Workers continued to clean up an oil spill Tuesday after a pipeline broke on an oil platform in the Santa Barbara Channel.
A weak global economy and a strengthening U.S. dollar overseas contributed to retail brand manager Cherokee Inc. reporting a 12 percent decrease in net income for the third quarter when compared with the previous year.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich has questioned whether Los Angeles World Airports can continue to own 17,000 acres of land in the Antelope Valley that had been the site of a proposed airport.
CITY HALL , City officials announced Tuesday that 13 residents have qualified for next year's City Council election, including two incumbent council members and former Burbank board members seeking to fill three seats.
More than 1.2 million customers of Time Warner across the country have been plagued with Internet and digital phone outages.
Congressional Democrats and the Bush administration have inched closer to an agreement on a taxpayer rescue of the American automobile industry, the New York Times reported.
WASHINGTON -- Wholesalers cut back on their inventories in October by the largest amount since the period following the 2001 terrorist attacks while they watched their sales plunge by a record amount.
PALMDALE , Concluding that a downtown restaurant has been operating more like a nightclub than an eatery, the Planning Commission on Thursday ordered the owner to either cease operating or apply for appropriate business permits.
Tuesday, December 9
Solar power, drought-resistant plants and recycled materials all contribute to Hangar 25 at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, what its builder is calling the most sustainable aircraft hangar in the world.
A state appeals court has decided that prescription drug manufacturers are bound to provide product warnings that exercise "due care," even if a generic equivalent is used to fill a prescription to which a patient has a negative reaction.
Monday, December 8
Glendale's Embassy Suites is finally open after construction delays
The City of Palmdale is seeking a carrier to service its airport
PALMDALE - The City Council on Wednesday postponed making a decision on adopting a measure that would, in most cases, keep restaurants more than 300 feet away from public or private schools.
Part II of guest columnist Scott Harris's marketing plan
Number of parcels on default list is much higher this year; officials are eyeing bargains.
Companies are using volunteering as leadership training
Reporter Mark Madler reports on Image Entertainment, 3D Summit
Reporter Linda Coburn on the proliferation of senior housing
Restructuring and firings come as the networks struggle with hesitant advertisers and tech-savvy viewers.
The Economic Alliance is hosting a major business expo in February
A reader-driven feature: photographs of Valley business people being feted, awarded, commended or just taking part in interesting regional events.
Actress and San Fernando Valley businesswoman Beverly Garland has died following a lengthy illness. She was 82.
College of the Canyons has received funds to train local workers
The local bar association prevailed against a state referral service.
Companies and non-profits are scaling back parties.
An update on a variety of hospital expansion and renovation projects.
The Calabasas Lamborghini dealership sits vacant one year after opening
The Walt Disney Co. expanded its media business in Europe by purchasing shares to up its stake to 96 percent in Jetix Europe N.V.
Friday, December 5
Shirley Bowens, a former employee in the Office of International Programs at California State University, Northridge, is under criminal investigation regarding alleged financial improprieties involving international students.
The $215 million Westfield Topanga Mall Expansion and Renovation has received a Merit Award in the annual International Council of Shopping Centers design competition.
Thursday, December 4
Wednesday, December 3
Tuesday, December 2
Former state assemblyman Fabian Nunez has been added to the board of directors for Zenith National Insurance Corp. (NYSE: ZNT) based in Woodland Hills.
Lancaster-based SimulationsPlus announced earnings for FY08 of $1.73 million on revenues of $8.97 million, an increase of more than 17.7 percent over last year.
Monday, December 1
LandSource Communities Development is asking a bankruptcy court judge to allow it to sell off land through a streamlined approval process in order to generate cash more quickly.
Adams will head Accounting & Transactions Advisory service