California: Supplier Diversity Spurs Equity-Driven Development
By the BF Staff
From the July/August 2021 Issue
The California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) recently announced Source Diverse Source Local, a public-private partnership to strengthen an inclusive procurement and resilient California-based supply chain.
The partnership was developed by the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA), part of GO-Biz, in collaboration with the Governor’s Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery (Task Force).
“As we continue in our economic recovery, partnerships like this will leverage California’s enormous buying power to drive local economic growth, support our diverse businesses and improve the resilience of our communities,” said Dee Dee Myers, Senior Advisor to Governor Newsom and Director of GO-Biz. “The COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced the need for California to have a stronger base of manufacturers and suppliers. By working with corporate buyers, we can help meet the needs of California’s supply chain now and in the future.”
Former Task Force members will lead in launching the initiative, including a financial donation from Google. The initiative and programming, which are set to launch this month, will build programming to recruit, support and convene corporations, industry leaders and diversity stakeholders; develop content; and expand statewide expertise and other key economic voices across California’s public and private supply chains to join the Source Diverse Source Local Pledge. Those Task Force members represent the following companies: Google, Lockheed Martin, Prologis, Southern California Edison, United Airlines and UPS.
Task Force member Pamela Kan, President of Bishop-Wisecarver and Executive Board Member of the California Manufacturers & Technology Association, will co-lead the initiative alongside CalOSBA.
“Last year, California consumed $408 billion in imported goods, many of them commodities that California produces in-state. California has a sophisticated and robust manufacturing industry that employs 9.4 percent of the state’s workers. We need to focus on building our supply chain for resilience to strengthen our small businesses and the local communities they uphold,” Kan said.
Other partner organizations have also joined the effort, including: Small Business Majority, NextGen Policy and California Small Business Development Center.
CalOSBA will develop strategic partnerships to strengthen a network of corporate and government supply chain opportunities. Historic supply chain barriers persist for diverse and small local firms, and by partnering on contractor readiness, Source Diverse Source Local partners will help build a stronger pool of contract ready diverse and local firms.
CITY OF INDUSTRY: JOBS, ENTERPRISE AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Since its incorporation in 1957, the City of Industry has been a business-friendly city, propelled by its own motto “Jobs, Enterprise and Regional Infrastructure.” The City’s commitment to ensuring that businesses and manufacturers prosper is a true testament to its roots and their advocacy to support business friendly policies.
Regional infrastructure is crucial to the City as businesses and manufacturers rely on roads and freeways to transport goods and the movement of people. For decades, the City of Industry has been at the forefront of advocating for critical infrastructure funding at the federal, state and local level. Having secured grant funding for various projects, the City continues to work diligently with elected officials, stakeholders and government entities to secure funding for the completion of all infrastructure projects impacting the City of Industry and the San Gabriel Valley.
Last month, Congresswoman Grace Napolitano, Congresswoman Judy Chu and Congresswoman Young Kim, secured $30 million in grant funding from the Department of Transportation to support the 57/60 Confluence Project—relieving one of the most notorious freeway bottlenecks for over 356,000 motorists that commute on the freeway every day. The project is expected to not only increase safety for drivers, but ease the congestion of the movement of over $35 billion worth of goods.
In May, the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments announced the Turnbull Canyon Road Grade Separation Project in the City of Industry had been allocated $5 million in state funding. This funding is critical as it will help ease the movement of motorists and goods in the region. The project is scheduled to begin construction during the summer of 2022.
Earlier this year, the City partnered with the Industry Business Council to launch their Made in City of Industry manufacturing initiative. The project is designed to support and retain the over 200 existing manufacturers and over 17,000 manufacturing employees in the city, while also attracting new manufacturers looking to expand their operations to the west coast.
The initial step of the initiative was the launch of a study to discover the main challenges of the City’s existing manufacturers and create solutions to help address those needs. The research showed that one of the main issues for manufacturers was finding, hiring and retaining qualified employees. A deeper analysis of the issue has sparked new ideas based on the demographics and geographical locations of the city’s existing employment base. The project team identified geographical “Labor Shed” areas where high concentrations of manufacturing candidates reside. With a focus on these areas, the team will implement marketing strategies and develop plans to help address transportation-related obstacles. With this and other opportunities identified in their work, the project team will be continuing its focus on the ever-changing manufacturing environment and adapting to new challenges as they occur.
A local manufacturer, Pluto Pillow, headquartered in the City was recently featured on ABC’s Shark Tank. Pluto Pillow has experienced tremendous success and growth in their business after being invited to pitch on Shark Tank. Specializing in the custom-made pillows, they hope to revolutionize the pillow industry, moving consumers away from the traditional “one-size fits all.”
They recently shared that their decision to build their headquarters in the City of Industry was simple, as the City is the epicenter and hub for manufacturers due to its close proximity to Los Angeles on the west and the Inland Empire on the east.
Three other City of Industry businesses that recently made waves debuting on the New York Stock Exchange as publicly-listed companies were Proterra Inc., Newegg Commerce Inc. and Torrid Holdings Inc.
Proterra Inc. is the leading manufacturer of electric vehicle technology while Newegg Commerce, Inc., is the leading e-commerce company for computer components, consumer electronics, gaming products and much more. Torrid Holdings Inc., is an apparel, intimates and accessories brand for curvy women.
Each of these companies have one thing in common—being headquartered in the City of Industry. They are among over 3,000 businesses in the City that represent various industries, which provide valuable services and goods worldwide.
As the economic engine of the San Gabriel Valley, the City will play a key role in the economic recovery throughout the region.
GOOD KARMA IN MORENO VALLEY
When luxury electric hybrid auto manufacturer Karma Automotive decided to locate a new site for its manufacturing plant, executives knew there was only one choice: the City of Moreno Valley, CA. Supported by Moreno Valley’s second-to-none pro-business environment, skilled and motivated workforce, strategic location and affordable lease rates, the U.S. automaker began to ship the first units of its $145,000 luxury vehicle, Karma Revero, soon after.
Karma Automotive and other Fortune 500 and international companies are thriving in Moreno Valley. Among the 4,500 businesses with facilities in Moreno Valley are ALDI Foods, Amazon, Cardinal Glass, Deckers Outdoor (UGG boots), Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, Floor & Décor, Harbor Freight Tools, Keeco, LeGrand, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Masonite Doors, Medline, Minka Lighting, O’Reilly Automotive, Philips Electronics, RedMed, Ross Dress For Less, Serta Mattress, ShipBob, Sherwin Williams, Skechers USA, Solaris Paper, United Natural Foods and Walgreens.
Situated in the heart of Southern California, the City of Moreno Valley delivers accessible market opportunities, a qualified and motivated workforce, the best pro-business environment and the ultimate California lifestyle.
Moreno Valley’s population of nearly 215,000 makes it the second largest city in Riverside County and the twenty-first largest in California. 2.4 million people live in a 20-mile trade radius and form a strong workforce of 1.1 million.
Moreno Valley led the region in absorption of more than 5 million square feet of new industrial corporate facilities in the past two years. The newly-approved World Logistics Center offers an additional 40.6 million square feet—the largest industrial corporate business campus in California.
Riverside University Health System Medical Center (headquarters for Riverside County’s hospital system, based in Moreno Valley) and Kaiser Permanente are both expanding their facilities by more than 1 million square feet each to meet strong regional demand.
Residential construction is adding additional new housing opportunities with more than 5,000 single and multi-family units under construction or in the development process.
More than 50 percent of Moreno Valley residents are employed as white-collar professionals. The City has a skilled workforce of more than 104,000. March Air Reserve Base is the City’s largest employer with 9,600 employees.
Moreno Valley offers some of the most affordable corporate lease and land values, as well as the best housing value and cost of living, in all of Southern California. The average home value is in the $400,000s.
Cost of doing business is low, with no payroll or local wage ordinance.
In Moreno Valley, time is money. They have formed a special concierge service and a quick-response strike team to assist developers and businesses with needs as they happen. And the City’s plan check turnaround times are unparalleled—they consistently beat other agencies in the region.
With its city-owned electric utility company, Moreno Valley offers attractive electric rate discounts that range from 7 percent to 26.5 percent. Businesses may receive an additional 2 percent discount for hiring 20 percent of their workforce from Moreno Valley residents, or an additional 4 percent discount for hiring 40 percent of their workforce from Moreno Valley residents. More rebates exist for solar power and energy efficiency upgrades.
The City also developed the “Hire MoVal” program, which offers business license fee waivers and access to small business development resources, as well as reimbursements for local hire of graduates and veterans.
Together, the City of Moreno Valley and the County of Riverside run the popular Business & Employment Resource Center, offering businesses free workforce recruitments, employee training, business consulting, workshops and job postings.
It doesn’t stop there. For businesses operating in imports and exports, Moreno Valley is a designated foreign trade zone. And under the Time and Materials program, businesses may be eligible for cost savings on post-entitlement Planning, Building & Safety, Land Development and Fire Prevention plan check, permit and inspection fees.
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This content was originally published here.