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Posts Tagged ‘EZ program’

Senator Steinberg Pulls SB 974 from the JEDE Committee Vote

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010 | Enterprise Zones, Legislation, Tax News


Less than 24 hours before the JEDE committee was set to vote on Steinberg’s SB 974, Steinberg pulled the bill from the committee.  According to the JEDE committee, because the bill is a lax levy, it is not subject to July 2, 2010 deadline.  The bill may resurface later, but we can only assume that Steinberg had a good reason to pull the bill just before the vote.

It's Time for Businesses to Grow

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010 | Enterprise Zones

While going through the Enterprise Zone commentary this past week I found a great post by Randy Gordon, the President and CEO of the Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce discussing the absolute need for the EZ program that the state of California provides.

Below are some of my favorite thoughts that he posted, “We are in a time of double-digit unemployment rates, significant underemployment, minimal economic diversity, budget deficits, and a record-high of inventory of vacant business and industrial space. Expansion, not elimination of the California Enterprise Zone program that rewards businesses and employees for locating and expanding in economically challenged neighborhoods, including a large portion of Long Beach, should be encouraged.

The California Enterprise Zone (EZ) Program does exactly that, which is why we will be asking you to follow our lead and contact your representatives in Sacramento and urge them to protect the Enterprise Zone Program and oppose any attempt to dissolve or decrease enterprise zone areas or incentives.

Tax incentives that are part of Enterprise Zones include such things as equipment, hiring, worker credits, tax deductions, and preference points that can help them secure state-sponsored contracts. In other words, tools that attract businesses and promote economic development.”

Senate Democrats unveil job plans, but no mention of Enterprise Zones

Tuesday, February 9th, 2010 | Tax News

The Sacramento Bee had this article today:

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg today unveiled a Democratic plan he said would create an estimated 140,600 to 197,600 jobs inCalifornia.

Steinberg, D-Sacramento, said the Democratic Caucus in the Legislature is introducing 27 bills that are part of an employment plan “that is real, not partisan, not hype.”

He said every measure to be introduced can be approved with a majority vote, and that the jobs-creation ideas could have a “multiplier effect” by creating even more jobs.

“I think people want to see something tangible,” Steinberg said.

Among the proposals:

• — A fee stabilization bill for California’s higher education systems that would set a 5 percent cap on tuition fee hikes in any given year and require students to be given an estimated cost schedule for what it will take for them to finish their degrees.

• — A bill to promote the Employment Development Department’s “work-share program,” which allows hard-hit companies to keep some employees on at reduced salaries with the EDD makes salaries whole in anticipation of an economic recovery and re-hiring.

California companies are not participating much in this EDD program, according to Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, who accompanied Steinberg and is author of this bill. The state of New York promoted its program last year, increasing business participation by more than 500 percent and reducing the number of workers needing full unemployment benefits.

• — A bill to restructure the furlough polices imposed by the governor to save money. The bill would exempt employees at the Franchise Tax Board, the State Board of Equalization and those in jobs funded at least 95 percent by sources other than the General Fund.

Steinberg hopes to revive a bill that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed last year requiring a mandatory level of renewable energy to be purchased inside California to help create jobs. The bill last year was based on a 33 percent renewable energy goal for public and private utilities by the year 2020. Last year’s proposal would have limited renewable energy credits purchased outside California to more than 25 to 30 percent of the renewable total.

The governor vetoed the bill, saying it could increase energy costs, but Steinberg said he plans to try to convince the governor to work with legislators on reviving a version this year he estimates could create 20,000 jobs.

Other proposals include:

• — A bill to fast track renewable energy projects eligible for stimulus funds. At least 11 projects are waiting for permits from state energy agencies.

• — A bill to streamline obtaining multiple permits to start businesses by starting “one-stop” permit centers through Cal-EPA. Such agencies existed in the mid-1990s to help speed up business and job creation during a an economic downturn.

• — A bill to grant a 5 percent bid preference to a company that can certify that 90 percent of employees on a government contract will be California residents. In an average year, California spends nearly $35 billion on service and consulting contracts.

Some of the bills would authorize the spending of federal funds and bond money for projects already on the books:

• — A high-speed rail bill would authorize investing $2.25 billion in recently granted federal funds to develop such a system in California, creating an estimated 50,625 jobs.

• — Two bills would authorize the state to spend $773 million in federal Qualified School Construction bonds to build schools in 43 school districts, creating an estimated 11,400 jobs.

Enterprise Zone Come Under Fire in Santa Clarita

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010 | Uncategorized

Despite the fact that new businesses in Santa Clarita will be able to take part in the Enterprise Zone program, Jonathan Randles has reported that new legislation is being discussed that could make the area’s EZ program much less effective.

Randles reports that Assemblyman John Perez, D-Los Angeles, is sponsoring an amendment that would require businesses to hire full-time employees and give their employees health benefits to receive the full tax credits.

This would dramatically decrease the effectiveness of the EZ program, since the costs of the health benefits would essentially wipe out the savings from the Enterprise Zone credits.

Update from the 2009 CAEZ

Thursday, November 5th, 2009 | Enterprise Zones

So far, the highlights of the show have been new HCD Branch Chief John Nun. He roused the crowd yesterday with his opening remarks focused on making the EZ program more transparent and efficient. He informed the audience that his job duties are focused exclusively on the EZ program. He has increased his staff by two members. Each staff member will be assigned to a number of zones that they will be responsible for and in fact intend to visit. John’s on hand’s approach was widely welcomed and highly praised by the audience and by CAEZ President Craig Johnson who gave his own rousing rally-the-troops speech this morning. The theme of these two speakers was the word “unprecedented” which Johnson had the audience recite with him. From lobbying, to public relations to statutory review and close collaboration with HCD, the CAEZ is taking shape and taking charge like never before. Yolanda Benson and Toni Symonds gave insightful presentations regarding current legislation, including AB 1139 and the schedule for the next few months. The legislative discussion seemed to come full circle to Johnson’s message that the audience get involved and continue to the wave of activism that is taking the EZ program to a whole new level.

A Coalition to Protect the California Enterprise Zone Program

Monday, August 10th, 2009 | Tax News

With the current condition of California’s economy, the EZ program has become more important than ever. With that in mind, the California Chamber of Commerce is recommending local businesses to join a new coalition to protect the Enterprise Zone program.

With the recent budget cuts, the California Entperise Zone program is one of the only remaining vestiges of tax relief for the local business community. The California Chamber of Commerce brought several studies to light in their recent posting, “Several studies have established the EZ program’s effectiveness. Most recently, a March 2009 revision of a national study by University of Southern California researchers concluded that state and federal EZ programs ‘have positive, statistically significant, impacts on local labor markets in terms of the unemployment rate, the poverty rate, the fraction with wage and salary income and employment.’ ”

To have your business added to the coalition, you can contact Kyla Christoffersen at kyla.christoffersen@calchamber.com

To see the article from the California Chamber of Commerce, click here.

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