Carl’s Jr. Underpays Employees
City Attorney Mike Feuer and the City’s Office of Wage Standards announced that the City has taken action against Carl’s Jr. Restaurants LLC, demanding the company pay $1.45 million in restitution and penalties for repeatedly failing to pay dozens of workers at multiple Los Angeles locations the City’s minimum wage.
"L.A. law is clear: employees must be paid at least the minimum wage. Anything less is a slap in the face to workers struggling to make ends meet. This is a major corporation that should know the rules,” said Feuer. “Our offices will always aggressively stand up for workers to ensure they get the wages they’re owed, and all the protections and benefits the law demands.”
“The minimum wage is a legally established threshold below which employers may not venture to pay their workers,” said John Reamer, Inspector of Public Works and head of the Bureau of Contract Administration. “The minimum wage was established to ensure economic equity and opportunity, and the Office of Wage Standards will continue to partner with the City Attorney to regulate and enforce compliance with the law.” Read more
Grand In Downtown Los Angeles
The Wilshire Grand Center has opened in Downtown Los Angeles, setting records. The 73-story building at 1,100 feet high is the tallest building west of the Mississippi and 9th tallest in the entire United States! Yes, there is more! The spectacular roofline of the new building is designed to reflect the shape of the Half Dome rock formation in Yosemite National Park. (The building is one of very few high-rise structures in DTLA without the mandatory flat roof providing helipad.) Another striking characteristic of the Wilshire Grand Center are its millions of programmable LED lights. So is its cost: $1.2 billion.
Here in Los Angeles where we’re all concerned with the possibility of a major earthquake, one has to wonder about the safety of a building as tall as the Wilshire Grand Center. Well, it is supposedly safer than our one family homes.
The spectacular skyscraper, a new landmark in Downtown L.A., is the brainchild a Korean businessman Yang Ho Cho, 68, a chairman of Hanjin Group (the owner of Wilshire Grand Center) whose father Choong Hoon Cho founded the Hanjin conglomerate. The lead designer of the project is David C. Martin. Read more
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L.A. Justice Fund
“Immigrants do not stand alone in Los Angeles, and this City is bound to the American values of equal justice and due process. Today’s City Council vote makes possible the allocation of our $2 million share of the L.A. Justice Fund, an extraordinary public-private partnership. But the L.A. Justice Fund is about more than dollars — it means that more Angelenos will have legal protection, more families will stay whole, and more people will be able to build lives with the people they love, in the country they chose.” — Mayor Eric Garcetti
Members of the City Council also shared statements of support for the L.A. Justice Fund:
“I’d like to thank my colleagues for approving the L.A. Justice Fund and for making it a priority in our budget. The fund falls in line with the Mayor’s efforts to defend Los Angeles and the council’s commitment to defend all its residents, regardless of immigration status. At the core of our democratic system is the belief that every person has the right to due process. The L.A. Justice Fund expands that right to more Angelenos, increasing their odds of prevailing in removal proceedings.” — Councilmember Gil Cedillo, Chair of the Ad Hoc Committee on Immigrant Affairs and Civil Rights Read more
Remembering Otto Warmbier
22 years old Otto Warmbier has died only days after being returned to the United States by North Korea.
The University of Virginia student - on his way to Hong Kong for a study-abroad program – used the days before the program was to start for a brief tour of North Korea. As he was about to depart North Korea, he was arrested at the airport and charged with allegedly stealing a political poster from his Pyongyang hotel room. In the court, the alleged theft of a propaganda poster became “hostile acts against the state”. In spite of his tearful “confession”, Otto Warmbier was sentenced to 15 years of prison and hard labor.
Then only 21, in a strange land, without any contact with his family, Otto was locked up in a North Korean prison. No one knows what transpired behind the walls.
In May of this year, United States officials were notified by North Korea – in an emergency meeting N. Koreans requested - that Otto Warmbier has been in a coma for a year. In official explanation, Warmbier’s condition was blamed on botulism which he allegedly contracted in prison. Read more