California looks to Texas for job growth answers

April 6, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
More jobs left California on Wednesday, this time for Texas - a state which touts a business-friendly climate. And now a delegation from Sacramento is headed to the Lone Star State to find out how it's luring companies away from California.

Costa Mesa-based just announced it'll shut down its Concord call center and customer service operations. A Texas firm's software will handle the jobs that 125 Californians did.

"I will go to Timbuktu if it'll put people back to work," said Assm. Dan Logue, R-Chico.

Logue is leading a bi-partisan delegation to Texas next week, on their own expense, to find out why the Lone Star State is adding more jobs than California. He points out that Texas added more than 165,000 jobs from 2008 to 2010, while California lost more than a million jobs during the same period.

"If we don't get into the game, and we don't realize that the golden goose is being slain in California, we're going to have to lay off thousands of teachers, law enforcement, and the roads are going to get worse," said Logue.

But does Texas, where everything is bigger, hold the answer to California's problems?

"Hell no. The fact is California has a $2 trillion economy," said Gov. Jerry Brown.

State leaders say Texas has a high poverty rate and ranks last in the country in adults with a high school diploma, calling to question whether its economy is fit for a 21st century model. California, on the other hand, attracts the most venture capital investment -- $12 billion last year.

"Don't undersell the home of Google, the home of Clorox, the home of the aerospace industry, the home of the Internet, so much of the research and development that is truly the engine of wealth," said Brown.

EDD numbers show California added 100,000 jobs just in February.

"Our growth of the California economy over the last, let's say, 20 years has been bigger in California, more growth than Texas," said Bill Lockyer, D-State Treasurer.

Assm. Logue says Texas jobs aren't just minimum wage jobs. He says that eBay recently announced it's hiring 1,000 PayPal employees in Austin, not California.

Load Comments