I’m excited about three good reports about job creation in Los Angeles.
Last week, a major international business chose L.A. City and County
to be its North American headquarters.  

Secondly, our signature
entertainment industry posted very positive numbers compared to last

And finally, L.A. County and the University of Southern
California appear to be close to establishing a biotech park around the
USC Health Sciences campus in Boyle Heights.  All three stories
represent major economic breakthroughs for our region.  

Chinese manufacturer BYD Auto Company Limited has chosen Los Angeles

to be its North American headquarters.  The decision will create an
estimated 150 jobs in sales, marketing, research and development for
cars and energy-efficiency products.   It will also create more than
1,000 indirect jobs.  BYD began selling the world’s first mass-produced
plug-in hybrid vehicle back in 2008 and is now working on the first
electric car that won’t require a charging station.

The company’s decision to choose L.A. was based in large part on the
successful outreach effort by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and First
Deputy Mayor Austin Beutner and his economic development team.   BYD
was founded in 1995 with one employee and now employs 160,000 people
worldwide.  It was recently named one of the "50 most innovative companies in the world" by Bloomberg Businessweek.

There are also positive signs for keeping film and television production in Los Angeles.  Last week, L.A. City Hall unveiled an electronic system designed to streamline the film permitting process for street closures
and parking.   E-permitting will save time and money and aid in
retaining and growing entertainment production jobs in Los Angeles.  

The L.A. Area Chamber pushed hard for state tax credits to keep filming
in California.  Those credits were finally approved by Sacramento in
2009, and they are already starting to pay off. Film L.A. reports that
nine more feature films chose to film in Los Angeles this year compared
to the first quarter in 2009.  Overall on-location filming has improved
by 18 percent over last year with 11,087 permitted production days so
far in 2010.  

All over the nation, communities and universities have been
collaborating on research and commercialization centers to attract
federal and private research dollars and incubate new companies in
science and technology.  The biotech park being discussed by USC and L.A. County
would include collaboration with faculty members from UCLA and the
California Institute of Technology and pay dividends to our region in
so many ways.

These three exciting progress reports represent more than good news.
They represent a breakthrough in thinking by elected officials and
their staffs at the city, county and state level.  It is our hope that
together, they will create a snowball effect (yes, in Southern
California) that will lead to many more job producing announcements in
the months and years ahead.  

Local and state governments have the ability to create and retain
private-sector jobs by making it easier and less expensive for
businesses to innovate and operate.   These three examples show that it
works.  Let’s keep the snowball rolling!