Anaheim Enterprise Zone At Risk from Grasping State Government

This came over the transom earlier from the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce:

Action Alert!

Anaheim Enterprise Zone is Being Threatened…

Some Senate Democrats have struck a deal with Governor Jerry Brown to abolish Enterprise Zones and replace them with a plan full of empty promises. Today, the Senate Budget Committee is expected to meet and adopt Assembly Bill 93 – the Governor’s May Budget Revise plan that guts Enterprise Zones as we know them. The full Senate is meeting today at 4 p.m. to hear the sweeping change.

Your voice must be heard TODAY!

Please click the above link to send your letter of opposition to your representatives by 3:30 p.m.

We need to flood our representative’s inbox so we are urging you to take action now or risk losing one of Anaheim’s key tools for creating, attracting and retaining jobs.

Sincerely,
Todd Ament
President & CEO
Anaheim Chamber of Commerce

Conservative blogger Jon Fleischman also weighed in on this issue on his FlashReport.org blog:

The appetite for more and more tax revenue by politicians in Sacramento is voracious.  If you stand still while reading this column, there is a decent chance that some legislation will be drafted targeting your wallet or purse for a State Capitol “cashectomy” — so I would suggest you kind of move around while you read this.

In Governor Jerry Brown’s May Revision to his state budget, he proposed pretty much sticking a fork into the state’s nearly thirty year embrace of what are referred to as Enterprise Zones, or EZ’s for short, in what appears to me to be a back door de facto tax increase.   What is an EZ?  Mark Lifsher over at the Los Angeles Times succinctly describes them this way:  ”The 27-year-old enterprise zone program currently provides mainly large corporations but also small businesses with about $700 million a year in credits they can use to reduce the taxes they pay the state. The idea behind the 40 local enterprise zones is to create jobs in poor urban and rural areas by providing incentives to employers to hire local workers.”

In other words, EZ’s are an embrace of the idea that you can actually foster job creation by reducing the tax burden on businesses large and small.  For years now, businesses have located, relocated or expanded in one of these EZ’s based on the expectation that the numerous cost-saving policies in place in these areas would continue to be there.  In a big-government state like California, legislation which broadly takes areas and seeks to reduce the cost of doing business with state within their boundaries is a good thing.  Actually, Governor Brown’s proposals to significant pare back EZ’s is actually a step in the opposite direction from where he should be going.  To quote Board of Equalization Member George Runner,  ”If I had my way, the whole state would be an enterprise zone.”

You can read the rest of Jon’s post here.

This is a story as old as time. Once you wave away the rhetorical smoke, this is about the state government’s never-ending quest for revenue. That need usually trumps the reality that fewer tax and regulations (as in enterprise zones) are necessary to economic growth.

 

 

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