In greater Sacramento, 145,000 people have lost their jobs since the recession began. Dominant industries like construction, professional services, and government have been hardest hit.
While other parts of the state and nation show signs of recovery, projections show the Sacramento region could suffer an unprecedented 60 month period of contraction before the outlook improves.
At Friday’s State of the Region event, 400 business and community leaders faced these hard facts and took action. The Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, the Sacramento Area Commerce & Trade Organization (SACTO), the Sacramento Area Regional Technology Alliance (SARTA) and Valley Vision together launched a regional collaboration called “Next Economy: Capital Region Prosperity Plan.”
“Next Economy is the capital region’s response for the economic rejuvenation of our community,” said Martha Clark Lofgren, Metro Chamber interim president & CEO.
In the coming months, a comprehensive analysis of the region’s economic sectors will be conducted by the Center for Strategic Economic Research. Results will help identify strategies to grow jobs and spur investment.
The Next Economy plan will:
- Encourage innovation and the creation of new business
- Scale up key industries and spur capital formation
- Remove impediments to business investment and job creation
- Ensure workforce education and skills training for jobs that will be in demand
The plan also calls for economic leaders, elected representatives, and community members to be involved in its creation and implementation.
In keynote remarks, California Forward Leadership Council member Lenny Mendonca of McKinsey Global Institute applauded the regional collaboration and told the group increasing productivity and innovation will be key to success. “Once again, California will be the place people come to find their dreams.”
Susan Lovenburg is regional partnerships coordinator for Greater Sacramento.