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The Leading Voice of Business in Orange County
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
orange graphAnother summer, another budget battle in Sacramento.  Even Drs. Jim Doti and Esmael Adibi, advisors each to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and State Controller John Chiang, reported at their mid-summer Economic Forecast last Thursday that the state's financial status continues to spiral downward with elected leaders failing to take the necessary steps for correction.  Three recommendations:  stop spending one time revenues for on-going programs; grandfather in existing pensioners but eliminate defined-benefit plans for defined-contribution plans to address  unfunded pension obligations; and reform the initiative process so that no ballot measure could pass without a defined funding mechanism, eliminating the drain on the state's general fund.  It is clear that, like Greece, California needs to adopt an austerity plan.  This is the "new normal" embraced by the private sector in a tough economy, which the public sector has yet to accept.   
On top of that, if the Legislature doesn't produce an honestly balanced budget (not one filled with gimmicks and unrealistic assumptions) California may be forced to issue IOUs for the third time since the Great Depression. In a letter to the Legislature, State Controller Chiang placed them on notice that sometime in late August or early September he will be forced to issue IOUs to mitigate a cash flow shortage... [READ MORE]

For more info, contact Dr. Wallace Walrod or Lucy Dunn.
The California primary election is TODAY! Make sure your voice is heard and your vote counts.  Click here to find your polling place

OCBC has studied the issues, met with and reviewed the candidates. Here are OCBC's recommendations for statewide offices and propositions:
  • Proposition 13 - Seismic Retrofitting Amendment--SUPPORT
  • Proposition 14 - Open Primaries--SUPPORT
  • Proposition 15 - California Fair Elections Act of 2008--OPPOSE
  • Proposition 16 - Taxpayers Right to Vote Act--OPPOSE
  • Proposition 17 - Continuous Coverage Auto Insurance Discount Act--NO POSITION

  • Mission Viejo Measure D--OPPOSE
  • Meg Whitman - Governor--SUPPORT
  • Carly Fiorina - U.S. Senate--SUPPORT
  • Senator Lou Correa - State Senate, District 34--SUPPORT
Click here for further breakdown on the ballot measures, supported candidates and OCBC's positioning. For more information on these candidates and ballot measures or on OCBC's position statements, please contact Kate Klimow.
anaheim job fair2Over 5,400 participants stormed the Anaheim GardenWalk last week for the 2010 Anaheim/OC Job Fair and Expo. The second annual event presented by the City of Anaheim and the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce showcased 130 employers and over 3,200 available job opportunities. In addition to the employer booths, the job fair featured several breakout sessions to provide job seekers with information to increase their chances of finding employment. One of the most popular breakout sessions was a one-on-one resume review with 22 resume reviewers meeting with 1,500 people.

"The road to economic recovery starts with jobs, jobs, and more JOBS," stated Lucy Dunn, President and CEO of OCBC. "Great employers stepped up to help Orange County get back to work and make the 2010 Anaheim/OC Job Fair come together."

Last year, the event drew 7,500 individuals with more than 100 employers offering 2,200 positions. The Anaheim/OC Job Fair and Expo was made possible through the efforts of the City of Anaheim, Anaheim Chamber of Commerce, Anaheim Workforce Investment Board, which oversees Anaheim Jobs, County of Orange, Orange County Workforce Investment Board, Santa Ana Workforce Investment Board, Employment Development Department, Orange County Business Council, The Orange County Register, The Shops at Anaheim GardenWalk, The Disneyland Resort, Hilton Anaheim, Freeman, Michael Brandman Associates, and Breakthrough Networking. For more info, contact Dr. Wallace Walrod.
dunnIn the garden of OC what we need is some serious cabbage, but instead we discovered last week some roses, radishes, and a few squirrels. Jobs creation is job one. OC's near 10% unemployment and the state's near 13% unemployment, we see signs of economic recovery, but no jobs creation. How do you create jobs? Reduce fees and taxes, cut regulations and eliminate opportunities for frivolous lawsuits. Anything else is a SQUIRREL, or a distraction, to the main event. www.CaliforniaSquirrel.com.

Click here to read the rest of the blog and see what our garden grows...

lea event 2010The Discovery Science Center was filled with over one hundred people last Thursday, June 3, for OCBC's second annual Latino Educational Attainment (LEA) Reception. The LEA Initiative is dedicated to empowering the parents of Latino students, by providing key training materials and information on how to navigate the school system, as well as advocate for their children.
Speakers at the event Thursday night at in Santa Ana included Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, County Superintendent of Schools William Habermehl, and OCBC Workforce Development Chair and AT&T executive Richard Porras. One of the more touching speeches came from Estanislao Rodriguez, a 37 year old father of three, who said "We can do a lot of changes, but everything has to start with my change [first]."
The program has produced important training materials for parents such as "The 10 Education Commandments for Parents" and "Developmental Assets."  This most recent guide is geared for schools, parents, businesses, and community groups in order to improve academic results and parenting skills when raising children and youth. One of the lessons parents learn is that "colleges look not only at GPA, but at the difficulty of classes taken, the quality of essays and the kinds of extracurricular activities they bring with them," Teri Rocco of Garden Grove Unified said. Click here to read coverage of the event in the OC Register. For more information, please contact Alicia Berhow.
coyote hills OCBC testified at the Fullerton City Council meeting in favor of the Chevron development that would have built 760 homes on 510 acres in West Coyote Hills. The proposal also included building of nature preserves, trails, setting aside nearly 350 acres in open space, and significant funding for local schools. The council voted down the proposal in a 3-2 vote.

"Denying one of the largest economic development opportunities in North County is a devastating blow," stated Lucy Dunn, President and CEO of OCBC. "In a time where private industry is suffering from record high unemployment and the worst economic conditions since the Great Depression, denying this project was a bad decision and we are extremely disappointed." 
The rejection of the proposal came as a shock to the private sector; specifically Shawn Nelson's vote to deny the project, since Councilman Nelson, in his race for Supervisor, claims to be a pro business/pro property rights conservative and has also made statements that Orange County needs more housing to ensure its economic future.  Mr. Nelson's reasons for opposing the project included that he had not read the development agreement and that the development fees were too high. Click here to read the press release issued from OCBC, Building Industry of Orange County and Orange County Taxpayers Association.
In voting against this project, the City Council also voted against a project estimated to create nearly 2,000 new jobs and a quarter billion dollars for the local economy.  These figures are significant as, in the week following this housing development vote, the City Council was forced to cut an additional $6.3 million from its city budget, including cutting 50 positions, reducing services like street repair and graffiti removal, and closing the library for an extra day.  The City is also looking at increasing fees across the board for services ranging from fire inspections to athletic field lighting in a 2010-11 budget that totals $238 million. For more information, please contact Kate Klimow.
By Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold OCBCCalifornia is in the midst of another painful budget season, where we are forced to make cuts to important programs and consider other extreme measures to close a $19.1 billion deficit.  While there are many factors that led to this, we have clearly seen that the size of our state's government has become unsustainable, and one of the primary reasons is the state's pension system, which is in desperate need of reform.
For decades, California has been issuing billions of dollars of unfunded pension debt without the approval of voters, and then using accounting rules to understate the size of that debt, most notably in 1999 with SB 400, a monumentally bad bill which sailed through the legislature in a matter of minutes with little debate.  Those lawmakers just assumed that a rising stock market would cover pension costs, but as we see today, they were wrong.  As a result, recent studies by Stanford, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern estimate that our state now has $500 billion in unfunded pension debt.
The burden for these mistakes of the past unfortunately falls on education, higher education, public safety, and other programs whose budgets must be cut in order to service this unfunded debt.  As hard as it may be to believe, state spending on retirement benefits this year is actually greater than state spending on UC and CSU.  This is not right, and it shows poor priorities... [READ MORE]
ocfa Fees for businesses that use the Orange County Fire Authority's (OCFA) services are slated to rise an average 3.9 percent, to pay for cost-of-living adjustments mandated by long-term union contracts set back in 2006.  These pay increases are for non-sworn personnel in the Building and Planning Services section of OCFA.
OCBC joined BIA/OC, OC Tax and the Apartment Association of Orange County at the OCFA Board meeting to testify to the negative impacts such a fee would have on the business community at this time, and urge the Board to oppose the fee.
OCFA has sufficient funds in its reserve to cover the increased costs of the contract and, more importantly, the Orange County Professional Firefighters Association Local 3631 has offered to cover the cost of the pay raise at least for this year.
Thanks to political leadership by Orange County Supervisors Pat Bates and Janet Nguyen, as well as Lake Forest Councilmember Mark Tettemer, the entire budget discussion was continued so that staff could go back to the drawing board and renegotiate the contracts with the three unions.  Supervisor Bates was adamant that she would not pass a budget that included COL pay increases when the cost of living has not increased at the same rate and when the increase was based on a fee imposed on the struggling business community. OCBC has acknowledged the leadership of these OCFA Board members and will continue to monitor the issue when it comes back before the Board in June. For more info, please contact Kate Klimow.
home2 Earlier in the year, The Irvine Company's sales success at its Woodbury projects helped push Orange County's total for new homes going into escrow to the highest level in two years, according to figures from Costa Mesa-based Hanley Wood Market Intelligence.

Sales contracts signed in the first three months of the year were up 56% vs. a year ago, Hanley Wood's figures show.

Buyers signed contracts to purchase 523 new homes in Orange County during this year's winter quarter.  That's the highest number of sales contracts for any quarter since the spring of 2008.  That includes more than 300 homes sold at Woodbury since The Irvine Company launched its 2010 New Home Collection in late January.

KB Home, another OCBC member, identified its "most successful project in America" as its Coronado development in Irvine's Woodbury East, a project of 110 homes being financed by the Irvine Company  It is almost sold out after just four months.

During a panel discussion staged at the Orange County Forum, KB Home indicated  that its Southern California division is the busiest it has been in years, and is gearing up for future home sales by buying a lot of land.

Coronado is one of six projects launched by the Irvine Company in January.  The project consists of 685 houses and townhomes.  The Irvine Company officials initially predicted it would take up to two years to sell them.  Almost half have gone into escrow so far. For more information please contact Kate Klimow.
industry summit seriesPlease join Orange County Business Council in partnership with the Orange County Workforce Investment Board in June as we conclude the Industry Summit Series. 
Dr. Wallace Walrod will be facilitating the final three forums relating to several emerging and high-growth workforce clusters in Orange County.  The forums focus on growing and enhancing the Orange County firms in these clusters, as well as promoting the workforce skill development needed in current and potential employees.

Creativity Forum:
The Creativity Cluster is made up of firms connecting businesses with creative individuals involved in producing cultural, artistic and design goods and services.  These artistic and inventive professionals generate original ideas into creative goods and services for every industry cluster in Orange County.  Also included are components of more traditional enterprises and activities that involve creativity, innovation, and/or good design. Occupations in the Creativity Cluster include jobs in fields such as Audio & Video Technology, Printing, Visual and Performing Arts, and Journalism with featured panelists:
  • Scot Moss, Walt Disney Imagineering
  • Patricia Dillon Sobczak, Chapman University
  • Chris Diede, DGWB  
  • Mel Rogers, KOCE
  • Christian Mouritzen, Capita Technologies
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
9:30am to 11:00am | Brandman University: 16355 Laguna Canyon Road, Irvine, CA 92618 (map)
Biotechnology and Nanotechnology:
The Biotech cluster is a knowledge intensive industry made up of firms that research, manufacture or process biological, chemical or medical products including medical and industrial chemicals and their preparation. Harnessing discoveries from the human genome project, the medical literature and health promotion practices, new tools are created to enhance the wellbeing of people.

The Nanotech Cluster is made up of firms that are involved with the manipulation of materials on a very small scale in order to build microscopic materials, products, and manufacturing processes.  Emerging discoveries in the materials sciences and molecular engineering are utilized to develop tools at a microscopic level for improvements in efficiency, wellbeing and sustainability.

Thursday, June 17, 2010
8:30am to 10:00am | Rancho Santiago Community College District: 2323 N. Broadway, Santa Ana, 92706

Information Technology:
The Information Technology Cluster is made up of firms that provide computer and software-related goods services. These include computer programming, desktop publishing, database administration and software design.

Thursday, June 17, 2010
10:30am to 12:00pm | Rancho Santiago Community College District: 2323 N. Broadway, Santa Ana, 92706


mussallemJoin OCBC for the Chairman's Leadership Breakfast featuring the Chairman and CEO of Edwards Lifesciences, Michael Mussallem. Listen as OCBC CEO Leadership Caucus Chairman Tom Phelps conducts an in-depth interview with one of Orange County's leading executives.

Michael A. Mussallem is chairman and chief executive officer of Edwards Lifesciences Corporation, the global leader in the science of heart valves and hemodynamic monitoring. Mussallem has headed Edwards Lifesciences since it was spun off from Baxter International Inc. and began operating as an independent, publicly traded company in April 2000.
Previously, he was responsible for the worldwide operations of both Baxter's CardioVascular business, which he had headed since 1995, and its Biopharmaceuticals business, which he had been appointed to lead in 1998.

What: CLB Featuring Michael Mussallem
When: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 | Breakfast: 7:30 a.m. | Program: 8 a.m.
Where: Center Club| 650 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa

Event Flyer | Online Registration

golf winnersJoin OCBC Thursday, July 29 for the 2010 Executive Invitational Golf Tournament, presented by Kaiser Permanente, at the beautiful Monarch Beach in Dana Point and tee off for education.

This annual event helps raise funds and awareness for OCBC's Latino Educational Attainment initiative and works to unify the community, students and parents and enhance the future of our workforce.  [CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO ON LEA]

Don't miss this great opportunity to hit the greens with Orange County's top business executives all while having fun for a great cause. For more information, or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Leslie Dods at 949.794.7241.

KaiserWhat: 2010 Executive Invitational Golf Tournament
When: Thursday, July 29, 2010 | Shotgun start: 12:30 p.m.
Where: Monarch Beach Golf Links | 50 Monarch Beach Resort North, Dana Point

Event Flyer | Sponsorship Opportunities | Registration Form | Online Registration

Workforce Housing Committee
Wednesday, June 16, 2010 from 9:30 - 11 a.m.

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Workforce Development Committee
Wednesday, June 16, 2010 from 7:30 - 9 a.m.

Community Colleges Working Group
Thursday, June 24, 2010 from 3 - 4:30 p.m.

Committee meetings are open to OCBC members and invited guests only. All committee meetings are held at the OCBC offices unless otherwise specified. For more information on upcoming committee meetings for 2010 check out OCBC's Committees.

Looking to get more involved? Click below to receive specific committee notices.
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"Dead Banks and Their Heirs: PIIGS, Euro Sovereign Defaults and the US Economic Impact" - Wed., June 9, 2010
Join a panel Discussion with Marvin Barth, Chief Investment Strategist at Tennenbaum Capital Partners; Raj Date, Chairman and Executive Director of the Cambridge Winter Center for Financial Institutions Policy; Dr. L. Wayne Gertmenian, Professor of Economics at Pepperdine University's Graziadio School of Business and Management; and Sanjiv S. Sanghvi, President and CEO of the Wells Fargo HSBC Trade Bank.  Dinner and Panel at the Irvine Marriott Hotel.  More information on www.worldaffairscouncil.org.

Walk United - Sunday, June 13, 2010

Team up with Orange County United Way and Angels Baseball Foundation and WALK UNITED to provide for the over 290,000 people living below the poverty level in our community. Register to Walk and Get More Information at www.walkunited.com.

OC Forum Monthly Luncheon: Development of SoCal's Future in Professional Sports - Wed, June 16, 2010
Join the Orange County Forum for their next monthly luncheon featuring John Semcken III, Vice President of Majestic Realty Co., and Los Angeles Stadium Project Executive to learn about the Development of Southern California's Future in Professional Sports: Impacts and Implication for Orange County. Click here for more event information and to register.

KOCE-TV 2010 Gala: That's Entertainment - Saturday, June 19, 2010
Join KOCE-TV of the 2010 Gala Event: That's Entertainment at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach. The event will feature a live auction, live music and will recognize Bette and Wylie Aitken and the Orange County High School of the Arts.For more information, or for sponsorship opportunities, please contact Claudia Jenkins at 714.861.4311.

Goodwill of Orange County Annual Charity Golf Tournament - Monday, June 21, 2010
Goodwill of Orange County is holding its annual charity golf tournament Monday, June 21, 2010. The fundraising goal for the 2010 Goodwill Invitational is to net more than $115,000. The mission of Goodwill of Orange County is to provide individuals with disabilities and other barriers the opportunity to achieve their highest levels of personal and economic independence. Click here for more event information and to register.

BIA Water Conference: Prepare4H20 - Thursday, June 24, 2010
The Building Industry Association of Southern California is pleased to present Water Conference 2010. We hope you will be able to join us in June for this innovative, yet crucial discussion, regarding  the current and impending needs for water in our southland communities. Don't miss the first annual Southern California water conference. Join exciting speakers and community leaders as we tackle our challenging water future. Click here for more event details and to register.

Central County Senior & Caregiver Summit - Saturday, August 7, 2010
The Central County Senior & Caregiver Summit hosted by Orange County Supervisor Janet Nguyen, the Orange County Office on Aging and Community SeniorServ will take place at the Crystal Cathedral on Saturday, August 7, 2010.  The Summit will provide a unique and exciting opportunity for Orange County's older adults and caregivers to learn more about health care and vital community programs.  Over 1000 older adults, caregivers and families are expected to be in attendance at this event with a particular emphasis on targeting under-served communities.  For more information, or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Karen Roper at 714.480.2805.

SAVE THE DATE! Mobility 21 Regional Transportation Summit - Friday, October 29, 2010
indicator Have an event coming up? Was your company just highlighted in the news? Are you doing something great in Orange County? The Business Council wants to know about it. Now OCBC members can submit news stories for OCBC's E-Update Indicator Newsletter.

Click here and fill out the submission form for one of Orange County's premier business news source. Not a member? Click here for more information on how to get involved and join the leading voice of business in Orange County.

Forward OCBC's E-Indicator to friends and colleagues by clicking on the "Forward Email" link at the bottom of the email and encourage them to sign up for one of Orange County's premier business publications!

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