Why Don’t We Recruit Businesses from Texas, Governor?

Dan Logue
California State Assemblyman representing the 3rd Assembly District

Governor Rick Perry’s latest attempt at luring businesses from California to Texas is a 30-second radio ad where he says, “Building a business in California is next to impossible.”

While I can’t fault Governor Perry for campaigning to bring more jobs to his state, I think it’s time Californians take a stand. After seven years straight of being named the worst state to do business with, according to CEO magazine, I think it’s time we fight back.

I’m proposing our Governor release our own radio ads in Texas, giving our own reasons why businesses in the Lone Star State should come to California. After all don’t we want to be number one again?

How’s this sound?

-California:  Home of the nation’s highest taxes on business. . . but we have Disneyland!

-Come to California, where we’re number ONE, in lawsuits, and first in lost profits!

-California:  Where we are number ONE again, in the cost of energy.

-California:  Always stylish.  Where red tape is the new black tie.

-California:  Where we are proud of being number one! In Poverty.

-California:  Where we literally tax the air that you breathe.

-California:  Where hunting is encouraged, especially when state regulatory agencies hunt small business.

What do you think? I like the Disneyland one the best.

Businesses should be lining up to come to California! Who doesn’t want to start their company in a state with the highest taxes in the nation? What CEO wouldn’t want to invest in a state where businesses are over-regulated? Isn’t our high poverty rate attractive to a small business owner?

So, why don’t we recruit businesses from Texas?

Well, we can’t.

This is because we have the highest poverty rate, the highest taxes, and the most over regulated government in the nation.

Last week, the California Business Roundtable released a statewide survey of 1,142 businesses throughout the state, reporting their perspectives on California’s business climate. According to the survey, sixty-nine percent (69%) of businesses say it’s harder to do business in California than in other states.

Throughout the years, California has turned relentlessly anti-business. Regulations change so often that it’s difficult for companies to stay compliant. The business environment is notoriously labeled as toxic, and new companies are constantly being told to stay away. It’s a story we know all too well: a local business shuts their door and leaves town because they can’t afford to stay in the state. This mass exodus of jobs leaving California is unacceptable. Californians deserve better.

As leaders, we need to be the voice of businesses throughout our districts, and provide them with the assistance they need to succeed. We need to create more incentives for companies to remain, invest and grow in California. We need to invest in workforce development. We need to streamline the regulatory process. Like Texas, we should be innovating, not regulating.

That’s why I introduced AB 228, which would implement a fix-it-ticket style system for businesses who receive first time violation fines with entities such as the Department of Industrial Relations. A business would have thirty days to fix the issue if the business has never been cited for that issue before. This bill is a good common-sense measure to help employers who in many cases do not know they may be violating one of California’s numerous laws and regulations.

Californians are frustrated with Governor Perry’s ongoing attempts to lure businesses to Texas, calling the latest radio ads distasteful. I would hope my colleagues in the Legislature view Governor Perry’s actions as I see them: a wake-up call for California.

The bottom line is if we want to bring back opportunity, make education affordable, restore our infrastructure, build our levees, fully fund law enforcement,  and lower our unemployment and poverty rates, then we must expand  our state’s economy .

Sacramento, you can’t be for jobs and against businesses, and still grow the economy — unless we move the Capitol to Disneyland.

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