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Our View: Public-private union helps business thrive

Posted: March 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.
Updated: March 18, 2012 1:55 a.m.

With the economy still on the slow and bumpy road of recovery, government at all levels should be helping businesses start and grow, and our City Council showed exactly that kind of business-friendly mentality in a recent vote to help get local upstarts off and running.

On Tuesday night, the City Council approved eight programs, including a business incubator, and changed the county licensing requirements to make the process easier for new businesses. It was an augmentation and update to the 21-Point Business Plan first approved in 2009.

The business-incubator plan comes through a partnership with College of the Canyons to give six to eight startup businesses — mostly in the creative and technology fields — offices and training for marketing and business plans to help them get off the ground.

Downtown Newhall is the likely venue for the incubation program because of the potential benefit to revitalization efforts there. The cost of the plan for financial year 2012-2013 has been estimated at $90,000 in community development block grant funds, with $50,000 in funding each year through the 2014-2015 financial year.

Along with the incubation program, the city OK’d a plan to ease fees for certain businesses that have to apply for county business licenses, including restaurants.

The push of a public-private union on a pro-business matter to benefit the SCV is something we’re happy to see take effect, and we hope there’s more similar forward thinking to come. There aren’t any concrete numbers on exactly how beneficial the city’s business-boosting plans will be, but any move to lift up the local economy and encourage growth in startup companies is a good one.

It makes sense to pursue a collaborative effort among the business sector, the city government and COC to make the most of all the resources available to help businesses grow and create well-paying local jobs reducing the number of residents who have to travel outside of the SCV for work.

What’s also positive about the plans is the fact that the city is taking a proactive approach to business growth. It’s much easier to build a house when you’re not simultaneously trying to keep it from burning down.

Kudos to the parties involved in what we hope is just the beginning of a rich future of local business development — a benefit to everyone who calls the SCV home.


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