Sen. Cannella Meets with Constituents, Local Business Owners to Discuss Job Creation and Economic Growth in Hollister

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

In light of 16.8 percent unemployment in San Benito County and 11.4 percent unemployment statewide, State Senator Anthony Cannella (R-Ceres) today talked with Hollister-area residents and local business owners about the urgent need for Sacramento to focus on job creation and economic growth.

This morning, Sen. Cannella stopped by a local coffee shop to talk with Hollister residents about the issues most important to their communities. Constituents brought up their concerns about the state of California’s economy and the need to create jobs now to get people back to work. They also discussed their concerns about how the state budget situation has affected local schools, libraries and businesses.

“Here in San Benito County, one of every six residents is looking for work. To me, that’s simply unacceptable,” said Sen. Cannella. “Clearly, Sacramento needs to work harder than ever to stimulate private-sector job creation so our neighbors can get back to work. In order to do that, we need to make it easier for businesses to locate their operations here in California, and we need to give our homegrown businesses the freedom and opportunity to grow, expand and hire more workers.”

Sen. Cannella – along with three of his colleagues in the State Senate – recently introduced a regulatory reform measure that would help improve the process by which regulations are developed and adopted to ensure new and existing rules won’t kill jobs. Senate Bill 196 is intended to improve regulation development to ensure higher quality analysis of California’s laws and regulations, provide more predictability and consistency for companies doing business in the state and establish more cost-effective rulemaking processes now and in the future.

Photo Caption: During a community coffee at the Mars Hill Coffeehouse in Hollister, Sen. Cannella talks with area residents about the most pressing issues affecting their communities.
Photo Credit: Jessica Hsiang, Office of Senator Anthony Cannella

Sen. Cannella also toured the Vista Meadows Senior Apartments, an affordable-housing project supported in part by more than $3 million in redevelopment agency (RDA) funds. Vista Meadows is a project of South County Housing, a nonprofit community development corporation that aims to promote healthy, sustainable communities by supporting both affordable housing projects and neighborhood services. Sen. Cannella also toured the Hillview project, which provides affordable housing for families participating in the organization’s self-help program. The Hillview project also received RDA funding.

Last month, however, the Legislature passed a majority-vote budget that included two bills, ABX1 26 and ABX1 27, that together effectively dismantle California’s redevelopment agencies. As a result, the funds that have supported the Vista Meadow and Hillview projects will no longer be available for future affordable housing projects in Hollister and around the state.

Yesterday, the California Redevelopment Association, the League of California Cities, the City of San Jose and Union City sued the state, saying these measures are in violation of Proposition 22, a voter-approved constitutional amendment that prohibits the state from raiding local government dollars, including RDA funds.

Photo Caption: Sen. Cannella and Hollister-area businessman Ignacio Velasquez looking at solar panels installed atop the carports at Vista Meadows Senior Apartments, an affordable-housing project supported by more than $3 million in redevelopment agency funds.
Photo Credit: Jessica Hsiang, Office of Senator Anthony Cannella

This afternoon, Sen. Cannella also meet with San Benito County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) Executive Director Nancy Martin to tour several sites around Hollister that, when filled, will bring the city additional jobs and additional revenues. Established in 1982, the EDC’s primary goal is to facilitate economic development in San Benito County, stimulating job growth and improving the quality of life for area residents. The corporation provides targeted business recruitment, bilingual small-business consulting and countywide business retention services. The EDC is managed by a 15-member board of community leaders.