San Diego to host 2017 California Economic Summit

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(Photo Credit: Port of San Diego/Flickr)

The 2017 California Economic Summit will take place in San Diego on November 2-3. This year marks the sixth annual statewide gathering for the Summit, a collaboration of CA Fwd and the California Stewardship Network.

With eighteen million Californians live below or near the poverty line, a lack of a comprehensive plan to improve upward mobility will prevent generations of Californians from doing better than previous ones. Building pathways that increase upward mobility will be a key component of the Summit dialog and action plans.

“We know that Californians are inspired to act on this critically important issue,” said Jim Mayer, CA Fwd president and CEO. “The Summit, with its regional infrastructure and state influence, is best suited to develop and promote a unifying solution.”

A group of San Diego leaders took the initiative to bring the 2017 Summit to their region to continue the Summit’s regions-based strategy for driving state policy.

“I thought we had innovations here in San Diego, not only in housing but job creation and water management to showcase to the rest of the state, so I actively pursued this opportunity,” said Jennifer LeSar, who has been involved in the Summit’s Housing Action Team and was instrumental in the launch of Housing You Matters, a San Diego coalition working to improve housing affordability.

Among the Summit's accomplishments are the passage of $200 million Strong Workforce Program, which is strengthening new partnerships among community colleges, employers and students. This will help the Summit drive toward its goal of producing 1 million more skilled workers over the next decade.

Summit leaders also helped to develop and are implementing Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts (EIFDs) to encourage local governments to work together to finance economic development projects.

“JPMorgan Chase is delighted to participate in this very important conversation and action agenda about our state’s future,” said Kari Decker, Managing Director of the Office of Corporate Responsibility for JPMorgan Chase in the Western Region. “We are well aware that the cost of living here, especially housing, is rising faster than wages, that many workers require new skills to qualify for better-paying jobs and that state, regional and community leaders need to better collaborate to help build a stronger economy. This summit is a critical component of that collective effort.”

The Summit has long been focused on California’s economic equality and defining steps that need to be taken to expand the middle class through a triple-bottom-line strategy that simultaneously grows the economy, improves environmental quality and increases opportunity for all.

The Summit’s 2017 Roadmap to Shared Prosperity defines an action plan to address the One Million Challenges, a Summit initiative launched in response to the state’s high cost of living and wage gaps:

  • Produce one million more skilled workers
  • Build one million more housing units
  • Save, capture, and reuse one million acre-feet of water annually

Registration for the 2017 Summit will open up on July 1. Click here to read about past Summit events and sign up to get the latest news about attending the Summit as it becomes available. 


Ed Coghlan

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