Front PageStrategic Plan

Exclusive: L.A. County Supervisor Candidates Share Economic Development Priorities

By November 1, 2016 No Comments

In the closely watched races for L.A. County Supervisor in Districts 4 and 5, LAEDC has compiled candidate responses on their economic development priorities. LAEDC believes this will help the public compare the candidates on these issues. LAEDC does not take positions on elections, and this information is provided directly by the candidates, based on their review of the seven goals of the 2016-2020 L.A. County Strategic Plan for Economic Development.

This information will help better inform your choice.

DISTRICT 4 Candidates Janice Hahn and Steve Napolitano (succeeding Supervisor Don Knabe)

DISTRICT 5 Candidates Kathryn Barger and Darrell Park (succeeding Supervisor Michael Antonovich)

District 4 Candidates napolitano
What are your priorities for each of these goals? Janice Hahn Steve Napolitano
  1. Invest in our people to provide greater opportunity

One of my top priorities is investing in all levels of education– from implementing universal preschool and increasing high school graduation rates to ensuring that all Angelenos are able to attend college or career technical schools– because I know that a quality education can create a pathway to good-paying jobs and financial success.

I’ll make early childhood education a priority; studies show our children do better in school and better in life when they have access to preschool. As a former president of the El Camino Foundation Board, I’m also a big believer in vocational education and I’ll work to create apprenticeship and career pathway programs to link industry with students so they’re ready for work and have job placement right out of school.
  1. Strengthen our leading export-oriented industry clusters

I will work to strengthen our export-oriented industry clusters by expanding job-training programs to develop a highly skilled workforce and investing in our Ports in San Pedro and Long Beach to ensure that they remain globally competitive.

I’ll create a business cluster team made up of relevant County staff (Regional Planning, Public Works, etc) to work with the LAEDC and our industry clusters to identify the barriers and opportunities for growth. I’ve already worked with the film community to lower County fees and expand film locations, including new filming on County beaches. I will continue these efforts for all segments of our economy.
  1. Accelerate innovation and entrepreneurship

Throughout my career, I’ve worked hard to attract new investments to LA County and foster business growth and innovation by providing tax incentives to encourage new small business start-ups, creating pathways for students to attend our world-renowned universities, and promoting the clean air action plan, which established the first Alternative Maritime Power berth at the Port of Los Angeles and created good paying jobs for hardworking men and women – I will continue to support policies that encourage economic development and small business growth on the Board of Supervisors.

I recently worked to secure a new County investment in a bio-science business incubator on the LA Biomed campus, and I will work with our other leading industries to reduce costs for start ups such as waiver of business taxes and fees for the first year, and co-locating businesses near industry hubs.
  1. Be more business-friendly

In order to keep good-paying, high-skilled jobs in Los Angeles and foster the growth of new and existing industries, we must ensure that Los Angeles has the mechanisms in place to produce an educated, well-trained workforce by improving access to higher education for all members of our community and expanding specialized technical training for hardworking men and women who wish to hone their skills; moreover, we must cut bureaucratic red tape and eliminate financial barriers that discourage businesses from operating in LA County.

I helped create the County’s Business Concierge program to create a one stop shop and will expand that to speed up approvals and help businesses navigate the system. I want to expand on this and create a County business portal that ties online and in-person assistance together to provide the most business friendly interface possible. I consider the County to be a partner in every business in our borders.
  1. Remove barriers to critical infrastructure development, financing and delivery

Improving the efficiency of our transportation system and renovating our outdated public infrastructure is of the utmost importance; on the Board of Supervisors, I will continue to invest in and promote the use of cutting-edge technologies, support initiatives like Measure M that will expand our public transportation system, and institute permit reform to streamline infrastructure construction so that our region – and our ports – remains competitive.

I believe in constant infrastructure investment. I fully support funding and accelerating projects that benefit all of L.A. County, including improvements that get goods and people in and out of our ports quicker. I’m also a fan of private investment and financing of projects to get them up and running faster and will work with businesses to make that happen.
  1. Increase global connectedness

I will work to expand and strengthen the existing international trade networks at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, connect export industries to new foreign markets, and attract global investments in our region by developing a skilled workforce and promoting research and development in new technologies.

As Supervisor, I will support outreach and engagement to attract global businesses to L.A. County and promote our unique qualities. I also support building a new convention center to showcase our communities and all that L.A. County has to offer. Linking financing with small businesses and international trade is an important goal as well.

  1. Build more livable communities

I will prioritize the needs of my constituents and improve the lives of all Angelenos by creating more affordable housing units and improving access to mental health services for our growing homeless population, expanding middle class economic opportunities, supporting the construction of a 21st century transportation network, and advancing smart policies that will fund vocational and apprenticeship programs that give workers the skills they need to succeed.

We need to invest in affordable housing and link housing with transportation and employment centers to make L.A. more walkable and rideable to improve our environment and health. Livable communities are also safe communities, and I will initiate a veteran’s hiring initiative to make up for the 1,500 Sheriffs’ deputies we’re currently short of in the County. We also need to invest in the parks and recreation and the arts, and spread their benefits across the whole County–decentralize them from their ivory towers so that we reach a more diverse audience and provide open spaces for people to enjoy.


District 5 Candidates
What are your priorities for each of these goals? Kathryn Barger Darrell Park
  1. Invest in our people to provide greater opportunity

Focus on growing high-skill, high-wage sectors and train people in those industries (bio-tech and others). We should also pay special consideration to populations facing barriers like foster youth, veterans, etc. These need to be approached regionally.

Establish a strong foundation for future learning and success by improving access to quality early childhood programs and family engagement in each child’s development. Not only will we create access to these programs for all children, but we will provide early childhood development programs, piano lessons, soccer practice, etc. for every child in the foster care system so that they too have the opportunities to succeed.

  1. Strengthen our leading export-oriented industry clusters

In order to increase exports we must be technology driven to compete with lower wages globally. In order for us to compete we need to align all of our capacities and assets regionally.

We will create 100,000 new jobs by placing solar panels on every rooftop in LA County and investing in green energy technology. This will create a solar boom and thousands of new solar and green energy startups will emerge. We will provide technical assistance support to businesses, from startups to established firms in order to become the green energy capital of the world.

  1. Accelerate innovation and entrepreneurship

The commercialization for local-based technology should be fully supported. The Business Technology Center in Altadena working in conjunction with Caltech and then selling goods to LA County is a good example.

Through solar and other forms of green energy technology, we will give every 18-­34 year old that is living with their parents the opportunity to have a $20 an hour job installing solar and the tools to build their own solar companies. We will create a generation of green energy entrepreneurs that are able to afford to buy homes, and have the option of living and working in the same community.

  1. Be more business-friendly

As an $11 billion a year buyer of goods and services in this region, the County can use our purchasing power to help local based companies.

Cut red tape and keep costs of doing business competitive with other regions.

  1. Remove barriers to critical infrastructure development, financing and delivery

Expediting the permit process is essential. The County also needs to do a better job of clarifying its contracting process to get shovels in the ground quicker.

We must analyze the needs of L.A. County’s future economy when prioritizing infrastructure development, and develop the systems to support new innovations in multimodal transportation, autonomous vehicles and clean fuel technologies.

  1. Increase global connectedness

We’re the 19th largest standalone economy in the world. We need to align regionally to compete on a global scale.

Through the development of solar and green energy technology in L.A. we will create the schools, the training facilities, and the factories that will teach and employ both our residents and foreign students and workers that wish to bring green technology back to their own countries. We will be the innovation center for renewable energy and we will partner with international businesses, schools, and governments to share our knowledge and boost our economy.

  1. Build more livable communities

Transit oriented development and walkable communities are crucial.

My priority is the health and safety of our residents. To build more livable communities, we must first shut down harmful facilities that are poisoning our residents, such as the Aliso Canyon gas storage facility, Chiquita Canyon Landfill, and the Sunshine Canyon Landfill.


Learn more about the Strategic Plan for Economic Development at



Leave a Reply