Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

A Mercedes-Class Effort

CALIFORNIA WATCH. One in an occasional series

May 22, 1993

California is beginning to strut its stuff to sell companies on doing business in the state. Look out, Utah, Arizona and Texas.

Let's hope so, anyway.

The newly created Trade and Commerce Agency, formerly the state Department of Commerce, prepared a "TeamCalifornia" effort to put the state in the running for a $300-million Mercedes plant. Alas, as state and local economic development officials set about to woo Mercedes, the German auto maker announced it had decided to focus on states east of the Mississippi River, so California fell out of the competition. But the state's very effort marks a sea change in the complacent attitude that has made California business so vulnerable to raids by other states.

California has begun to fight back, identifying new business opportunities, courting companies and working more aggressively to help retain existing businesses in California. It's a new experience for a state that had long attracted business without even trying.

Trade and Commerce, meanwhile, is working with the city of Carlsbad, which is one of two areas (Prince William County, Va., is the other) under consideration for a $100-million theme park planned by the Danish toy maker Lego Systems. Efforts like this should begin to turn around the notion that California's climate, in addition to being sunny, is decidedly anti-business.

By the way, the task of selling California would be a lot easier if Sacramento succeeds in lightening unnecessary business regulations and finally reforms the state's messy workers' compensation system.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|