Economic Development

Economic Development

Two California Cities Top List of U.S. Travel Destinations

San Francisco has claimed top honors in Conde Nest Traveler's readers' survey of the top cities to visit in the United States.  The tiny coastal city of Carmel, home to Pebble Beach and former mayor Clint Eastwood, took 8th on that list. 

Even more impressive, San Francisco was second only to Sydney, Australia in the worldwide survey.  Sydney has evidently sat atop that list for 8 years running, but SF has been steadily gaining!

Get the full lists here.

Two California Cities Top List of U.S. Travel Destinations

San Francisco has claimed top honors in Conde Nest Traveler's readers' survey of the top cities to visit in the United States.  The tiny coastal city of Carmel, home to Pebble Beach and former mayor Clint Eastwood, took 8th on that list. 

Even more impressive, San Francisco was second only to Sydney, Australia in the worldwide survey.  Sydney has evidently sat atop that list for 8 years running, but SF has been steadily gaining!

Get the full lists here.

"Protectionist" Cities and Counties?

Usually the term "protectionist" is thrown around Capitol Hill and international trade summits... not your local council or supervisorial meetings.  As the recession lurches along, many local governments are trying to prop up local businesses by directing government projects their way. 

This is not without its risks, however.  the SacBee has really good look at this trend across the state, and notes that  "In 2004, the Federal Highway Administration withheld $700,000 from a road project in Cleveland on the grounds that the Ohio city's local-hiring law, similar to Stockton's, was illegal. A federal appeals court upheld the highway administration's decision."

Read more here.

"Protectionist" Cities and Counties?

Usually the term "protectionist" is thrown around Capitol Hill and international trade summits... not your local council or supervisorial meetings.  As the recession lurches along, many local governments are trying to prop up local businesses by directing government projects their way. 

This is not without its risks, however.  the SacBee has really good look at this trend across the state, and notes that  "In 2004, the Federal Highway Administration withheld $700,000 from a road project in Cleveland on the grounds that the Ohio city's local-hiring law, similar to Stockton's, was illegal. A federal appeals court upheld the highway administration's decision."

Read more here.

Oakland Moves to Squelch Laundromat, Nail Salon Proliferation

Oakland took time-out from searching for solutions to its real problems and addressed a fairly obscure one this week.  With storefront vacancies at an all time high, the other city by the Bay feared that nail salons and laundromats would proliferate across the city like rabbits in spring and nipped that one in the bud.  An emergency ordinance would require all new nail salons and self-serve laundromats to receive a major conditional use permit before opening. It costs roughly $3,000 to apply for such a permit.  That's a lot of press on and spin cycles. 

Not all small businesses created equal?

Read more from the SF Chron or from "A Better Oakland." 

Oakland Moves to Squelch Laundromat, Nail Salon Proliferation

Oakland took time-out from searching for solutions to its real problems and addressed a fairly obscure one this week.  With storefront vacancies at an all time high, the other city by the Bay feared that nail salons and laundromats would proliferate across the city like rabbits in spring and nipped that one in the bud.  An emergency ordinance would require all new nail salons and self-serve laundromats to receive a major conditional use permit before opening. It costs roughly $3,000 to apply for such a permit.  That's a lot of press on and spin cycles. 

Not all small businesses created equal?

Read more from the SF Chron or from "A Better Oakland." 

LA Stadium Proponents Try Legislative Gimmick to Exempt Project from EIR

It's called a "mushroom bill" in Sacramento.  Translated: a bill that grows in the dark and is 99 times out of a 100, totally poisonous.  This is what proponents of the City of Industry NFL Stadium are trying this week in an effort to get the project around any environmental snags. 

Read more in the SacBee

LA Stadium Proponents Try Legislative Gimmick to Exempt Project from EIR

It's called a "mushroom bill" in Sacramento.  Translated: a bill that grows in the dark and is 99 times out of a 100, totally poisonous.  This is what proponents of the City of Industry NFL Stadium are trying this week in an effort to get the project around any environmental snags. 

Read more in the SacBee

Citizen Engagement Grants Announced

Common Sense California has announced the grantees for Phase I of its 2009 Citizen Engagement Grant Program.  Phase II is still available, details below, but first the winners:

1.  Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District ($7,500): The Water District will be engaging in a "Water Resource Planning Process", involving stakeholders and residents in dialogues about water rights, and water usage.

2. Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce ($5,000): The Chamber of Commerce will be leading a public engagement process concerning the housing element of the city's General Plan.

3.  San Diego Common Cause ($5,000): The city is considering whether to continue its "strong mayor" form of government, and Common Cause will be leading discussions on that subject to both inform and solicit the opinions of area residents.

4. City of San Pablo ($7,500): The city will be leading a "participatory planning" effort concerning development on an important main road. This area has been designated as a Priority Development Area (PDA), and there are several possible planning options.

5. The County of Sonoma ($7,500): The county will be convening public participation events around the creation of their Strategic Plan, which includes budget and infrastucture decisions. The county has developed solid media contacts to help "get the word out" for these gatherings.

6. The County of Sutter ($7,500): Challenged by a significant gang problem, the county will be convening facilitated discussions throughout the area about ways to deal with it. A researcher/facilitator from CSU-Sacramento has been contacted to independently lead these conversations.

Phase II Applications Close Sept 14.  Common Sense California has made the application process very accessible. Simply go to their website to learn more about Grant criteria, and click on "Apply Now!" where you can submit your online application.

Citizen Engagement Grants Announced

Common Sense California has announced the grantees for Phase I of its 2009 Citizen Engagement Grant Program.  Phase II is still available, details below, but first the winners:

1.  Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District ($7,500): The Water District will be engaging in a "Water Resource Planning Process", involving stakeholders and residents in dialogues about water rights, and water usage.

2. Pleasanton Chamber of Commerce ($5,000): The Chamber of Commerce will be leading a public engagement process concerning the housing element of the city's General Plan.

3.  San Diego Common Cause ($5,000): The city is considering whether to continue its "strong mayor" form of government, and Common Cause will be leading discussions on that subject to both inform and solicit the opinions of area residents.

4. City of San Pablo ($7,500): The city will be leading a "participatory planning" effort concerning development on an important main road. This area has been designated as a Priority Development Area (PDA), and there are several possible planning options.

5. The County of Sonoma ($7,500): The county will be convening public participation events around the creation of their Strategic Plan, which includes budget and infrastucture decisions. The county has developed solid media contacts to help "get the word out" for these gatherings.

6. The County of Sutter ($7,500): Challenged by a significant gang problem, the county will be convening facilitated discussions throughout the area about ways to deal with it. A researcher/facilitator from CSU-Sacramento has been contacted to independently lead these conversations.

Phase II Applications Close Sept 14.  Common Sense California has made the application process very accessible. Simply go to their website to learn more about Grant criteria, and click on "Apply Now!" where you can submit your online application.

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