Las Vegas Sun

August 20, 2019

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Letter to the editor:

Competing for California firms

A great deal has been said and written about economic development efforts lately. What I haven’t heard mentioned are some of the underlying economic reasons why more businesses from California haven’t relocated to Nevada, regardless of which ad campaign we are running.

Los Angeles has something Las Vegas never will: Ports! This single factor may not make economic development efforts in Southern California futile, but it certainly doesn’t require an MBA from Harvard to figure out that having local access to cargo vessels is a huge benefit to business and industry.

Nevada’s tax and regulatory climate may seem attractive, but they have not caused huge industries to relocate here from Southern California. If the tax and regulatory burdens in California outweighed the benefits I’ve mentioned, industry would have left California a long time ago.

We should all be proud of the strides UNLV, UNR, CSN and NSC have made, but they don’t hold a candle to California’s university system. Perhaps our colleges could do more if our politicians quit shooting them in the foot.

Here’s a suggestion: If we are going to have ad campaigns to compete for California’s businesses, determine which businesses actually can move and market directly to them. Then highlight other companies in the same or related industry that are here as opposed to spending hundreds of thousands dollars on generic ads with smiling celebrities.

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