Is it too tough for businesses to get their fair share of work from the City of Los Angeles?
The Los Angeles City Council apparently thinks the answer is “yes.” So Wednesday councilmembers approved a plan designed to make it easier to do business in the city, in part by establishing a small business commission and cutting down on bureaucratic red tape.
The list of recommendations, submitted by an ad hoc council committee on job creation, lays out more than 30 steps and strategies that city officials will study or move forward on.
The jobs committee was created last year, following the adoption of the city’s $15 minimum wage. Business groups were reluctant at the time to support the wage increase measure, pointing to studies that say it would lead to the loss of jobs.
Council members said Wednesday the jobs plan is aimed at shifting the city’s focus toward being more supportive of businesses.
“These are important changes in the way Los Angeles treats the business community that will help promote job and economic growth,” said Councilman Paul Krekorian, who chairs the ad hoc jobs committee.
“I want to make it part of L.A.’s DNA to give businesses the support they need to open and thrive in our city,” he said. “This plan isn’t the end of this discussion, but it is a critical step toward embracing a new pro- business, pro-jobs philosophy.”
Chief among the recommendations is the creation of the Business Advancement Team, a group of city officials who will advocate for businesses within the city.
The plan also calls for setting up a small business commission to give business people a way to provide input and communicate with city officials.
Other strategies include finding ways to make it easier for small businesses to apply for and obtain city contracts; assessing all city-owned real estate for economic potential; and setting up a website guiding businesses through city permitting, licensing, regulation and assistance programs.
The plan also asks for a study into the effectiveness of the city’s tax credit and incentive programs.
–City News Service
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