The California Business and Industrial Alliance, a New Organization that Sets Sights on Fixing PAGA Law

Tom Manzo

President, Timely Prefinished Steel Door Frames and President and Chairman of the Board at California Business and Industrial Alliance


The California Business and Industrial Alliance (CABIA) is a newly formed non-profit trade organization. CABIA exists to promote the interests of California-owned small- and mid- sized businesses and the people they employ. It accomplishes this through a mix of public education, legislative lobbying, and grassroots organizing. The Alliance is led by a team of experienced California business owners and communicators committed to creating a regulatory climate that fosters the creation of new businesses, and helps existing ones prosper.

The Alliance will work with legislators of all political backgrounds who share our common interests. CABIA was formed due to Private Attorney General Act (PAGA) Laws that hurt Timely Industries and thousands of other businesses who have been affected by a PAGA lawsuit.

Our platform is simple: change or abolish PAGA laws to protect against frivolous suits and change workers compensation laws so that they make sense for both employees and employers. 

The reality is this battle will take many years, given the entrenched interests in Sacramento and the path our legislature is on. California businesses needed a voice. CABIA wants all types of members, the mom and pop shops, restaurant owners, manufacturers, retail stores, any business, as many of these medium to smaller sized businesses just do not know the laws or where to turn if they do get a lawsuit. We want to educate so businesses do not get trapped by the insane amount of Labor Laws that are on the books. Many companies cannot afford multiple Human Resource Staff or their own legal department, and even those companies have been affected by PAGA.

The State does not even understand our issues as they employee over 142,000 and have legal departments and large human resource staffs that we do not have. The State does not realize every employer and every employee has different types of jobs and different types of situations and going by their 1,039 page Labor Law Digest to have a “One Size Fits All” regulation just does not work in the real world. The trial lawyers have taken over the State and no one knows how to regain control as a majority do not even understand the laws that have been written. To show how contradictory the State truly is  one of the preferential laws is the “hot food and drinks” provision: “Under IWC Order 12-2001 for employees in the motion picture industry, hot meals and hot drinks must be provided for employees who are required to work after 12 o’clock midnight.” But not for the retail store manager working the night shift?

The 2017 Labor Law Digest starts out with 10 pages that equal 122 new laws. CABIA wants to advocate a freeze on new laws and reform on existing laws. There is no need to add to a system that is already broken. We continue to hear these laws are designed for the bad employers, and if that was true why are so many good employers being hurt?

We have surrounded ourselves with an experienced Board of Directors who understand and own their own businesses.

Houman Salem a Co-Founder of CABIA is an entrepreneur and business strategist to the fashion, apparel, and retail industries is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of ARGYLE Company. Richard LoGuercio is recognized as an industry leader and proud recipient and recognitions including a member of Biz Bash magazines Hall of Fame Award, honored in 2017 with the Lifetime Achievement Award by Special Events magazine. Richard is the owner Town & Country Event Rentals with a fleet of more than 110 trucks offering nationwide delivery that has more than 600 full time staff members who service Southern California’s most notable events, movie premiers, awards shows, gala fundraising events, weddings and social events. Pat Kinzy is part owner of Automation Plating located in Glendale, California is a perfect example of hard work the leads to what we have known as “The American Dream”. Pat went from Maintenance Mgr. in 1997 to President in 2008 and in 2016 half owner and he is devoted to empowering his employees to succeed, giving them ample opportunity to grow. Michael Saltsman is Vice President at Berman and Company, an award-winning communications firm in Washington, DC, where he serves as Managing Director of the nonprofit Employment Policies Institute. Saltsman is responsible for the firm’s work on labor-related topics, managing issue campaigns, testifying before state and local legislatures, and speaking frequently to national and local business organizations. He’s a regular contributor to Forbes, the Wall Street Journal and Orange County Register, and his writing and research have also appeared in dozens of other national publications.

I am President of CABIA and also President of Timely Prefinished Steel Door Frames located in Pacoima. Timely has almost 200 employees and is leading manufacturer in the door frame industry with an American Made Product that is accepted by many major Hotel Brands, Assisted Living, Office buildings, and other multi-family projects. That is our current Board of Directors who understand what needs to be done in California and what can help other businesses succeed and grow.

CABIA will be holding its first official meeting August 24th at 12:00 pm in Sun Valley. Go to www.cabia.org for more details as all members and non-members will be invited. It is time to stand up for our rights and ensure we are heard.

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