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April 20
1874 - First train out of L.A. to reach new town of San Fernando; Newhall 2 years later [story]
train tunnel


Thanks to a hiring spree within the hospitality and tourism industry as the result of weakened pandemic restrictions, California employers added 140,000 jobs in February, reducing statewide unemployment to 8.5%.
| Monday, Mar 29, 2021
unemployment

By Nick Cahill

SACRAMENTO, (CN) — Driven by the reopening of restaurants and the tourism industry, California unemployment dropped to 8.5% in February, the Golden State’s lowest mark of the pandemic.

With the state loosening business restrictions incrementally since the holiday spike of COVID-19 cases dwindled, the hospitality and leisure industry added over 100,000 jobs last month. In total, California employers hired 141,000 new employees, nearly erasing the deficit accrued in December and January under Gov. Gavin Newsom’s most recent lockdown order.

California registered the third largest jobless rate decrease in February of any state, but its estimated 8.5% mark remains well above the nationwide figure of 6.2%.

State officials celebrated Friday’s U.S. Department of Labor release, calling it a “milestone” in what has thus far been a slow economic recovery for the nation’s most populous and richest state.

“This month marks the lowest unemployment rate California has seen since the onset of the pandemic last year. (Friday’s) news, along with the governor’s announcement this week that California is continuing to expand COVID-19 vaccine eligibility, is a milestone in our ongoing recovery,” said California Labor Secretary Julie A. Su and one of Newsom’s top economic advisors Dee Dee Myers.

The state’s improvement was led by the hospitality and leisure industry, which resumed offering indoor dining in some parts of the state last month and combined to add 102,000 jobs. The hiring surge was a positive sign for the hard-hit industry that is still down nearly 700,000 jobs compared to February 2020.

Overall, seven of California’s 11 industries added jobs including other services (14,100), education and health services (13,000), manufacturing (8,900), trade, transportation and utilities (8,200) and professional and business services (5,400). Meanwhile, the agriculture industry added nearly 3,000 jobs, tallying gains for the seventh straight month.

February’s performance will likely be repeated or enhanced in March and April, assuming Covid-19 cases continue to drop, says Jeffrey Clemens, economics professor at University of California, San Diego.

“Finally a bit of optimism on the job market front,” said Clemens, who is also co-editor of the Journal of Public Economics. “The February data show the first substantial signs of job market recovery we’ve seen since the fall.”

The hospitality industry’s February hiring-spree was certainly encouraging, but Clemens emphasized the enormity of the job losses suffered in California over the last year.

“The jobs market is climbing out of a deep hole,” Clemens added, referencing the fact California is still down 1.6 million total jobs.

The pandemic-induced stoppage of California’s $3 trillion economy put millions of residents suddenly out of work and sent jobless claims soaring. The state estimates 2.6 million nonfarm jobs were lost last March and April while statewide unemployment peaked at 16.3% in May 2020.

There was additional good economic news for California last month as officials say tax receipts were up nearly $4 billion over projections. The Newsom administration attributed the healthy figure to lower tax refunds as a result of the state’s recently passed “Golden State Stimulus” which offered $600 payments to low-income taxpayers.

“California’s improving revenue picture is another sign of the growing light at the end of the tunnel as we recover and rebuild from the pandemic,” Newsom said earlier this week.

Statewide unemployment may have sunk a half-point in February, but nearly a dozen of the state’s 58 counties still have double-digit unemployment.

Los Angeles County’s rate fell to 10.9% from 12.7% the previous month, but it remains the only urban county in the double digits. The rest of the list consists of mostly rural, agricultural-producing counties like Kern (10.8%), Imperial (15.9%) and Monterey (10.9%).

Friday’s unemployment number comes from two mid-February federal surveys of 80,000 California businesses and 5,100 households. California’s March update is scheduled to be released on April 26.

New unemployment claims are also trending in the right direction, as filings were down 12% in California last week compared to the week prior. The 95,000 claims during the week of March 20 were the fourth-lowest total for the state during the pandemic. California has now issued a staggering $130 billion in unemployment benefits since March 2020.

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SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Tuesday, Apr 20, 2021
L.A. County Unveils 2021-22 $36.2 Billion Proposed Budget
Los Angeles County’s $36.2 billion Recommended Budget, focused on expanding and sustaining extensive safety net services, will be presented to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, by Chief Executive Officer Fesia Davenport.
Tuesday, Apr 20, 2021
Tuesday COVID-19 Roundup: L.A. County Remains in Orange Tier; SCV Cases Total 27,595
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday 33 new deaths and 360 new cases of COVID-19, with 27,595 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Tuesday, Apr 20, 2021
Westfield Halts Plans to Bring Costco to Town Center
Westfield Valencia Town Center officials announced Monday they’re halting plans to expand the mall with a 101,000-square-foot Costco and other amenities.
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College of the Canyons proudly welcomes highly esteemed songwriters for Broadway and film, Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty, to the School of Visual & Performing Arts’ Virtual Industry Insight Series on Tuesday, April 27.
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Los Angeles County’s $36.2 billion Recommended Budget, focused on expanding and sustaining extensive safety net services, will be presented to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, by Chief Executive Officer Fesia Davenport.
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The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday 33 new deaths and 360 new cases of COVID-19, with 27,595 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
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As the inventory of homes listed for sale during March in Santa Clarita fell 38.3 percent, sales of homes and condominiums took off, with the condo median price setting a record, the Southland Regional Association of Realtors reported Tuesday.
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The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday their plans to unveil the 12 Months of Quarantine photo exhibit, scheduled for Monday, May 3 and is expected to run till the end of the month.
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After more than a year, ice has returned to Santa Clarita, and The Cube – Ice and Entertainment Center is now open to the public!
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Westfield Valencia Town Center officials announced Monday they’re halting plans to expand the mall with a 101,000-square-foot Costco and other amenities.
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1874 - First train out of L.A. to reach new town of San Fernando; Newhall 2 years later [story]
train tunnel
Los Angeles County Public Health officials on Monday confirmed 18 new deaths and 337 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, as cases in the Santa Clarita Valley now total 27,588 since the pandemic began.
Monday COVID-19 Roundup: 2 New Vaccination Sites Open in SCV, Palmdale; 27,588 Total SCV Cases
The city of Santa Clarita’s Film Office has reported six productions filming in the Santa Clarita Valley, aka "Hollywood North," the week of Monday, April 19-25, 2021
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The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and the Mental Health Commission will host a public hearing for the Mental Health Services Act Three-Year Plan on Thursday, April 22.
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The Children’s Bureau is seeking foster families during National Foster Parent Appreciation Month and is now offering two virtual ways for individuals and couples to learn how to help children in foster care while reunifying with birth families or how to provide legal permanency by adoption.
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In April, the city of Santa Clarita joins in the celebration of National Volunteer Month by recognizing the community's exceptional volunteers with a national award.
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To provide a framework to guide the future of residential development locally, the city of Santa Clarita is embarking on a public process to update the Housing Element of the Santa Clarita General Plan.
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In an email distributed to parents, Sulphur Springs Union School District Superintendent Catherine Kawaguchi warned parents of a man telling students that he is there to pick them up.
Sulphur Springs Warns of Suspicious Man Near Schools
1880 - Pico Oil Spring Mine Section 2 patented by R.F. Baker and Edward F. Beale [story]
E.F. Beale
1945 - Actors Harry & Olive Carey sell Saugus ranch after 29 years; now Tesoro del Valle [story]
Carey Ranch
1930 - Telephone switchboard operator Louise Gipe, heroine of the 1928 St. Francis Dam disaster, tries & fails to kill herself over an unrequited love [story]
Louise Gipe
The city of Santa Clarita’s Planning Commission will hold a regular meeting virtually Tuesday, April 20, at 6:00 p.m.
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The owner of a shopping center at the corner of Lyons Avenue and Apple Street will seek the Santa Clarita Planning Commission’s approval Tuesday to subdivide the lot from three parcels to eight.
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The deadline to submit entries for Santa Clarita Sister Cities’ Young Artists and Authors Showcase has been extended to Sunday, April 25, 2021.
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