By JOEL ANDERSON
77th District Assemblyman
A Fresno businessman, Alan Jurkonis, moved his company to Minden, Nev., last year because he said operating in California was like “death by a thousand cuts.” For Mr. Jurkosis, it was far cheaper to ship his product from Nevada to Southern California than from Fresno to Southern California.
Between contradicting regulations, the highest tax rate in the country and a slow economy, it’s no wonder longtime California businesses, such as Mr. Jurkonis’ company, are leaving in droves.
Right now, doing business in California is slow torture.
Over 2.2 million residents are unemployed. That’s 12.3 percent of California’s population. Hardworking citizens are struggling to make ends meet, and over 141,000 Californians have been forced out of the state in search of employment.
These are tough times for Californians. But my Republican colleagues and I are not ready to give up on California yet. We have a new vision for restoring the luster of our Golden State.
California is home to our nation’s brightest minds and vast natural resources. If we could just get government out of the way long enough, the free market would prosper. How can we get California back on the road to prosperity? There is only one answer: private sector job creation.
Lawmakers must do everything in their power in 2010 to lessen the regulatory burden on California businesses and provide incentives for them to hire new employees and bring much needed jobs to our Golden State.
For example, I have introduced AB 2278 to give research and development tax credits to high-tech companies in California.This is a critical incentive for San Diego’s world renowned biotech industry, allowing for the creation of new high-quality jobs to be filled by Californians.
California can’t afford to let more employers like Alan Jurkonis’ company or San Diego’s biotech companies take their businesses to other states. Business-friendlier states like Nevada have done everything they can to encourage California companies to move, stopping just short of buying their one-way tickets.
Unfortunately, the Democrat leadership continues to kill the Golden Goose.
Two weeks ago, Senate Pro-Tem Darrell Steinberg proposed that the state spend more money, adding to our already outrageously overspent budget, on public sector jobs. More government intervention is not the solution to California’s job crisis. The principles of free market economics are what have always made our state strong.
Our state needs more private sector jobs.That will be the only way out of this mess. Our state is at a crossroads, and our future depends on whether our state will have the courage to put California’s jobs first.