Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom presented his highly anticipated statewide economic growth strategy to business leaders Friday in San Jose. The plan outlines specific strategies for sustainable job creation and economic development that rely upon public-private partnerships at every level of government. OCBC Chairman Eddie Northen of UPS was a featured panelist to comment on the plan. Highlights include promotion of trade and California’s international presence; streamlining regulatory procedures while increasing procedural transparency to increase the state’s competitiveness in this industry; build infrastructure; and support industry clusters to help regional development.
Lt. Governor Newsom’s plan addresses many of the concerns of the business community but what the plan lacks is acknowledgement of the successful policies Orange County has implemented that have caused this county to weather the recession better than others. Orange County maintains the lowest unemployment of any metropolitan area in the state, the third lowest in the country, boasts diversity of industry, innovative local government, and is a proven jobs creator. Meanwhile, Silicon Valley, which is regularly featured in the plan, has not produced a new job in ten years. Orange County is a unique and thriving region with its own identity and strengths, not a bedroom community of Los Angeles.
OCBC commends the Lt. Governor for proactively addressing California’s lack of economic development strategy, and is working to schedule a roundtable discussion with Newsom and Orange County business leaders. For more information contact Kate Klimow, Vice President of Government Affairs.