California News


Legislative Reality Check – CA Needs Jobs!

Nationally the unemployment rate surpassed 9.0% and in California it topped the 11.5 percent mark for the first time in more than a quarter century.  Those living in some California counties are suffering even greater hardships at the hands of this statewide economic downturn. Merced County’s unemployment, for example, is at 17.5%.

Orange County’s 8.6% unemployment figure is fairly low compared to the rest of the state but keep in mind this figure means over 140,000 of our friends and neighbors are out of work. When almost everyone in the county knows someone looking for work it becomes painfully obvious jobs must be the top priority of the state’s lawmakers. Now more than ever we must do everything we can to protect the jobs we have and stimulate new job growth.

“The UCLA Anderson Forecast recently released its annual economic forecast and announced that u nemployment in the state will probably reach 12.1% by the end of this year and will not return to single digits until late in 2011…To overcome our current economic crisis, we must do more than balance the budget; we must develop a new commitment to job creation and business growth.  Working Californians and thriving businesses are our tax base.  If we fail to grow new jobs in California, we will be plagued with a never-ending budget crisis.  The Legislature’s priorities should be getting people back to work, boosting the economy and bringing businesses back to the Golden State.”

In a related development, the California Manufacturers and Technology Association commissioned a report on the status of manufacturing jobs in California. The report found that the Golden State has been losing manufacturing jobs faster than comparable states. Between 1990 and 2007 California lost 26% of its manufacturing jobs compared to states such as Texas that lost only 3.6% of its jobs. The study found that California’s job loss has more to do with anti-business policies than cheap foreign competition.

This should be of particular concern to policy makers because these jobs generally pay higher than average wages. In fact, according to the study, the steepest losses were in high-tech manufacturing where the average salary is over $100,000.

The above comments were taken from State Senator’s Tom Harman’s June Newsletter.

Some recent news stories on California’s loss of manufacturing jobs:

6/23/09 – Los Angeles Times: Loss of factory jobs in California blamed on regulation
6/24/09 – San Francisco Chronicle: California manufacturing jobs cross state lines
6/24/09 – Orange County Register Editorial: Headed for the exits
6/24/09 – California Business Journal: California losing ground in manufacturing


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