Proactive Use of CA Enterprise Zone by Santa Clarita City Council

California’s enterprise zone program made the news yesterday in an article published in The Signal (actually a news release by the City of Santa Clarita).  This week the Santa Clarita City Council approved their “21-Point Business Plan for Progress.” One key component in the plan is to invest $50,000 in a broad marketing effort to promote the area’s enterprise zone.  According to the writer,

“Since the city was designated an Enterprise Zone a year and a half ago, the program has generated a potential $14,689,000 in savings to local business, a number the city believes is only a small portion of what can be achieved with increased awareness about the program and its benefits.”
The City Council’s Agenda Report on this topic, dated April 28th, 2009 offers some additional interesting details.
“This campaign will include increased marketing and direct outreach to local businesses as a way to help thousands of companies understand the potential tax savings available just by doing business in the City of Santa Clarita. To date less than 5% of eligible businesses have taken advantage of the hiring credits available through the Enterprise Zone, but with increased funding for outreach and marketing to generate awareness of the program and its benefits, this number should increase substantially.”
This comes in light of California HR 1139, which if passed by the State of California without further amendment would effectively dismantle the enterprise zone’s most important tax benefit — the enterprise zone hiring credit. Well publicized promotion of the program by local jurisdictions — especially when a jurisdiction earmarks funding and incorporates the program into it’s own plans for economic growth — might be key to keeping the program alive in the future..
Keep up the good work Santa Clarita!


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