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Economic Incentives, Jobs — They’re EZ!

It’s all about jobs. How many times do we have to say it? A lot, I guess. Business wants to hire, to thrive, but we get pummeled every day from neighboring states to move to lower tax, less onerous regulatory locales. In fact–true story–even OCBC was solicited by Henderson, Nevada’s economic development team to “move” to Nevada!

I know–it was an unsolicited email, but that’s how crazy things are for California business.

There’s one economic incentive this state does have: enterprise zones or EZ. EZ is a designated area where businesses earn tax credits by hiring certain qualified, unemployed workers, buying equipment and growing in an economically depressed area. Great idea. And Santa Ana is Orange County’s success story, retaining businesses, hiring unemployed and attracting new enterprises. Anaheim also qualifies for an EZ, but the state currently caps the number allowed and there were 15 applications for only 4 spots, out of 42 total.

Why is there a cap? In these recessionary times with these high unemployment rates, the entire state should qualify as an enterprise zone! But that would be too much for our Sacramento leaders to think about–at least not yet. So, in the meantime, OCBC supports approval of just those 11 applications that didn’t get a coveted EZ designation through legislation: AB82 X3 (Solorio) and SB1 X6 (Correa). These bills are winding their way through the legislature now and with each new zone, effectively 10,000 jobs are created. For 11 zones, that’s 100,000 new jobs for California, plus the retention of innumerable businesses otherwise being wooed by other states.

Help us create jobs. Support these bills–and an new EZ for Anaheim among them–by calling your legislator today.


Posted on November 10, 2009


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