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News Highlights for the Week: July 10 – July 16

News Highlights for the Week: July 10 – July 16

Jeanette Lem

Here are the latest local news highlights to kick off the week of Monday, July 10, 2023.

Long Beach to host Refuse Operator hiring event due to staffing shortage 
Image via Instagram: @longbeachcity

Long Beach is organizing a hiring event to fill current openings for Refuse Operator positions in the Public Works Department on July 22, 2023, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 2525 Grand Ave. The city is facing a staffing shortage in this area and wants to expedite the hiring process by providing job seekers with an opportunity to apply, interview, and potentially receive on-the-spot job offers. The event will involve work history screenings, interviews, and onboarding activities for successful candidates, including background checks, physical examinations, and drug screening. The Public Works Department has up to 30 full-time and part-time openings for Refuse Operators, and all new operators, including non-career employees, will be eligible for a recruitment incentive of up to $6,000. Candidates can complete their applications online prior to the event or in person on the day of the event. They are advised to bring specific documents, such as their DMV K4 driving record, driver’s license with Class A or B endorsement, and a copy of their resume and work history. The City of Long Beach is also implementing a training program to address staffing shortages by hiring non-career, part-time Refuse Operators and preparing them for the commercial driving test, thus creating a pipeline for employment opportunities with the City. Interested job seekers are encouraged to RSVP ahead of time and can find more information and online applications on the Refuse Operator Hiring Event webpage. Learn more here.

Citizenship information sessions to be held at Burnett Library 
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The Burnett Neighborhood Library will be hosting two citizenship information sessions to teach residents about the path to naturalization with Centro CHA. The first will be held Thursday, July 13 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and the second will be held August 10 at the same time. Centro CHA is a prominent advocate for immigrant rights, having dedicated more than 20 years to advocating for immigrant rights. Specifically, for the past 17 years, they have been focused on offering immigrant integration services to the Greater Long Beach community. They will discuss services including assisting with Naturalization applications, helping with requests for fee waivers, assisting with DACA renewals, and aiding lawful permanent residents in applying for green card replacements. Centro CHA prepares its naturalization applicants for the interview process with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), ensuring they are well-equipped and confident. Centro CHA is also a member of the Immigrant Integration Task Force, a network of organizations focused on immigrant rights based in Los Angeles. This task force is led by the California Community Foundation and the NALEO Educational Fund (National Association of Latino Elected Officials). Learn more here.

City will discuss placing a measure on next year’s ballot to increase wages for hospitality workers
Image via Instagram: @hotelmaya

Long Beach voters may have the opportunity to decide on a minimum wage increase for local hospitality workers in 2024. The City Council is considering placing a measure on the ballot during their next Tuesday meeting that would raise the minimum wage to current market rates. The specific amount of the raise is yet to be determined as a labor market analysis would be conducted. This discussion follows recent walkouts by Southern California hospitality workers, including those in Long Beach, who are seeking better wages during contract negotiations. The proposal aims to address the rising cost of living in Long Beach, particularly in downtown where most hospitality jobs are located. The measure would require the city manager’s office to conduct a labor market analysis and the city attorney’s office to prepare a ballot measure based on the findings. The memo highlights the importance of a strong hospitality workforce for the city, especially with upcoming events like the 2026 FIFA World Cup and the 2028 Summer Olympics. Other cities in the region, including Los Angeles and Anaheim, are also considering similar wage increase measures. Learn more here.

See Also

Mark Twain Library offering “to-go” services in light of safety concerns
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The Mark Twain Neighborhood Library is temporarily adopting a “To-Go” service model due to ongoing staffing shortages and disruptive behavior in the facility. This model, which will be in place until at least the end of July, aims to ensure efficient library operations and provide a positive environment for visitors while the city looks to improve the security situation in the area. Under the To-Go service, patrons can request and pick up items like books, DVDs, and Chromebooks. They can also still apply for new library cards. However, browsing, public computers, printing, restroom use, and meeting room rentals are not currently available. The library can be reached by phone for inquiries and items can be picked up during regular operating hours on specific days. It’s important to note that library funding remains unaffected. Additional information on LBPL hours and locations can be found at Learn more here.

Long Beach Port receives grants to accelerate transition to zero-emissions operations 
Image via Instagram: @portoflongbeach

The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, the busiest shipping gateway in the nation, have received nearly $600 million in state infrastructure grants. The grants aim to support long-term upgrades in goods movement capacity and reduce environmental impacts on nearby communities. The Port of Long Beach will receive a total of $350 million, which will be used for construction and clean-air technology projects to accelerate the transition to zero-emissions operations. The funds will be divided into two major initiatives: $225 million for zero-emissions cargo-moving equipment and infrastructure, including top handlers, tugboats, and locomotives, and $158.4 million for the Pier B On-Dock Rail Support facility, which will facilitate the transfer of cargo from trucks to on-dock rail. The grants are seen as a significant boost for the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, which handle 35% of the country’s imports and exports. The funding is crucial as the ports face deadlines to transition to zero-emissions cargo handling equipment by 2030 and implement a fully zero-emissions truck fleet by 2035. Learn more here.

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