This weekend we’ll celebrate Labor Day, traditionally the end of summer and the return of football and cool autumn temperatures. Fortunately, talk is finally heating up on a game plan to put California back on track toward a winning economy. Last week, Gov. Jerry Brown released a three-part California Jobs First Plan to spur companies to hire California workers. This is on the heels of Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Economic Growth and Competitiveness Agenda to lead California into the post-recession “Next Economy.” With fears of an economic relapse on the horizon, the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce applauds both Gov. Brown and Lt. Gov. Newsom for putting plans on the chalkboard to make business investment and job creation the top priority for California lawmakers. 

Gov. Brown’s proposal lays out a series of steps to build economic momentum through tax relief and more certainty in the State’s business climate for job creators. Major components of the plan would expand eligibility for an underutilized tax credit for small businesses and provide more than $1 billion in tax relief to businesses that purchase new manufacturing equipment. Gov. Brown’s stated goal is to put the Golden State on more of an even playing field with competitors from other states and other countries.

Lt. Gov. Newsom’s document outlines his vision for how California can recover from our nation’s second highest unemployment rate by developing a long-term strategy for future prosperity. The plan relies on a comeback of our State’s traditional stars — gearing up exports, reinvigorating manufacturing, accelerating the clean economy and investing in innovation. Underlining all his initiatives are themes of accountability via performance metrics; public-private partnerships and collaboration; removing barriers and above all, acting with a sense of urgency. 

What is missing from both of these plans is a strong acknowledgement that streamlining California’s regulatory environment is absolutely essential to preserving the jobs we have and encouraging new investment by private sector companies. We expect a “Hail Mary” pass for regulatory reform to be introduced this week. Its passage would not be a game changer, but it may be the first down we need to achieve more progress in the future. 

Putting Californians back to work will require a team effort from all of the power players in Sacramento, including labor and environmental groups. With two plans on the table, this is a great opportunity to cool off partisan rhetoric with the weather and put in place job producing legislation that will generate more tax revenue for our schools, parks, roads and social services. The time for pre-season practice and speech making is over. It’s game time. Let’s snap the ball and start moving down the field.