“We are showing the country that democracy can work if we listen, learn, align, and work together. Let's make that our goal in 2017.”
Those words closed the 2016 California Economic Summit in Sacramento last week, as shared by Bill Mueller, executive director of Valley Vision, regional host of the gathering.
Today, to keep that momentum going, we're sharing the opening video (above) that kicked things off, when more than 500 Californians gathered for the fifth annual statewide Summit event to talk about strategies that take on issues hampering upward mobility in the state.
On Day One of the Summit, leaders and action teams collaborated and brainstormed on plans that address four of the biggest challenges in the state: water, workforce, housing and the middle-income jobs gap.
On Day Two, California education, business, and elected leaders at Summit stressed the need to address the state's low educational attainment and expressed concern over investment in higher education and the role it plays filling the state's workforce pipeline.
Also on the second day, attendees and speakers turned their attention to how to match the scale of the state's housing crisis and issues of better managing water in the new normal of long-term droughts.
“Housing is the platform foundation for every possible success in California,” said State Senator Toni Atkins (D-San Diego). But, she added, “We're moving into a crisis of housing affordability.”
Finally, Mueller also shared how the Summit is an “audacious public policy experiment” with added value of bringing leaders from all regions and across the political spectrum to find common ground, outside the state Capitol, and to solve problems.
Action plans sharpened at the Summit will be built into a comprehensive policy roadmap for 2017, which will include a detailed housing strategy framework to be sent to the Legislature.
You can check out more stories about the Summit on the CAeconomy news blog and sign up for updates to read more about progress in the new year.