Mayor Swearengin's Plan to Create Jobs

March 9, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
The mayor of Fresno announced a new plan to help create more jobs for the city. On Tuesday Mayor Ashley Swearengin admitted what many people had known for years."Fresno is known to be one of the most least business friendly cities in the country," said Swearengin.

At a news conference at Fresno City Hall, Swearengin unveiled a brand new blue ribbon task force aimed at making it easier for businesses to spring up in the Valley.

The group is made up of local leaders all with a vested interest in bringing more jobs. They announced a new plan called Process Improvement and Permit Enhancement Strategy -- or PIPES for short.

Interim Fresno City Manager Bruce Rudd said, "What we're doing here today marks a change in the City of Fresno. We are going to be a partner in creating jobs for the people and those that call Fresno home."

The task force says there is a systematic problem with the approval system. Some of the chronic failures included is an outdated zoning code.

Also in place were inconsistent and unclear processes for applicants. And the mayor admitted there had been too much red tape to wade through.

The task force's goal is to make reforms that will get a business project approved within sixty days.

Ed Dunkel is part of the new team and says time is money, "When you have a project or you have a fund or budget well that's time related. So if you don't know how long that's going to take. You're not going to invest in that."

The task force is a new investment that Mayor Swearengin hopes will bring new money through future industrial, commercial, and residential projects.