Councilman Buscaino released the following 4-Point Jobs Plan in 2011 to share his vision for creating jobs and boosting economic growth in Council District 15. Key steps have already been and he’s just getting started.
Jobs Point #1: Securing Our Port Jobs
As the leading seaport in North America in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates more than 250,000 regional jobs and $8 billion in annual wages.
We cannot take these things for granted.
By 2014, the Panama Canal widening will allow passage of high volume ships that could bypass Los Angeles and head directly to East and Gulf Coast Ports competing with our shipping volume. A Southern Legislative Conference Report has identified a myriad of infrastructure and dredging projects underway and in the planning stages.
The Port of Los Angeles is currently implementing its own Channel Deepening Project in order to receive larger cargo ships and stay competitive in the global market.
I will work closely with the Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles, the Board of Harbor Commissioners, and labor organizations to ensure we are offering the right incentives to keep our shipping volume up and remain the leading seaport in North America
This is essential to securing our longshoring and other Port-related jobs as well as the small businesses that support the cargo industry.
Jobs Point #2: Dynamic Waterfront Development
For over 100 years, the Waterfront has been the backbone of our local economy and has attracted immigrants from around the globe looking for great middle class jobs in fishing, ship building and goods movement.
The Waterfront belongs to the people, and today its development presents the greatest opportunity for transformative positive change in the Harbor Area.
The Port has demonstrated a willingness to invest heavily on infrastructure and beautification projects along the Harbor Area’s Waterfronts, but I view the proposed projects as just a beginning. They are the foundation for future development that will include retail and restaurants to be frequented and enjoyed by local residents and regional visitors alike.
The development of restaurants, art galleries, storefronts and maritime related attractions, however, is far too slow. We need a dynamic mix of historic establishments and modern attractions -- places for local and visiting families to dine and shop and enjoy entertainment offerings -- to build the Waterfront as a premier tourist destination.
The Port has a built-in tourism advantage with the thousands of cruise ship passengers that come here every year. It will be my focus to fast-track completion of a world-class waterfront that will ensure that these visitors, and other regional visitors, will spend their money in our shops and restaurants.
I also strongly support the USS Iowa becoming one of the main attractions as a floating museum in our San Pedro Harbor.
As Councilman, I will dedicate myself to introducing real estate professionals to the unique economic opportunities offered by and near our waterfront, promoting conferences, trade shows and charity events on our waterfront so that we can build an industry buzz and Los Angeles can become the greatest waterfront in the world.
When businesses open on the waterfront they will create jobs for the people of Council District 15.
Jobs Point #3: Jobs of the Future
As your Councilman, I will support major initiatives that can make Council District 15 the center for marine science, technology and manufacturing jobs in Southern California.
Pollution at the Port complex is a serious problem, but it also presents a job growth opportunity as the best solutions to maritime and port pollution are driven by new green technologies. We need to work to develop these technologies locally so we can create jobs locally. The research, innovation and manufacturing of technology that serves to green the Port should be performed in the District that houses the Port.
I will support the proposed relocation of the Southern California Marine Institute from Terminal Island to City Dock 1 in San Pedro. Bringing a premier marine research center to our waterfront will introduce a stronger university presence in San Pedro and add new jobs to our local economy.
Additionally, we need to leverage the research center and the presence of major college research teams from USC, UCLA and others to create a local hub for marine science, bioscience and technology companies in the Harbor Area. This happened in San Diego with the Scripps Institute of Oceanography and it is not beyond the reach of the second largest city in the United States.
By growing a base for new high-tech green products and a skilled workforce we can rebuild our crumbling manufacturing base. I will work hard to increase these manufacturing jobs from Watts to the Waterfront so our local economy improves its breadth of middle class jobs.
As your next Councilman, I will assemble a team of Harbor Area business leaders and experts, including the able team from PortTechLA, to develop strategies for recruiting venture capital firms throughout the country to establish or invest in Harbor Area technology companies while promoting the unique opportunities for science and green technology in our Port.
Jobs Point #4: Small Business Assistance
Small businesses are a critical component of our local economy, and they are the primary job creators of the Harbor area.
Anyone who has ever tried to start a business in Los Angeles knows it requires navigating through a lot of red tape and slow bureaucratic processes. That is why, as Councilman, I will create a Small Business & Jobs Liaison staff position for Council District 15.
The Liaison will be tasked with helping Harbor Area entrepreneurs and job creators steer through the bureaucracy at City Hall, allowing them to get back to the business of doing business.
I will work to build on the Property Business Improvement District (PBID) model that has proven successful in Downtown San Pedro. I want to spread PBID opportunities to areas in Watts, Wilmington and Harbor Gateway.
I will support the San Pedro Art, Culture and Entertainment District (ACE) which has brought many families to the downtown area who have not been there in years. We need to continue to leverage the historic Warner Grand theatre, the recent partnership with Marymount College and the upcoming arrival of the Iowa to bring even more patrons to the downtown business community.
I will work with local Chambers of Commerce to address inadequacies in parking, graffiti abatement, law enforcement and beautification projects all aimed at creating a safe and vibrant environment for retail and commercial success throughout the Council District.
Our city’s tax base and our ability to fund public services depend on successful small businesses and the jobs they provide. As Councilman, I will never stop working to build a business friendly city that can attract new job opportunities for Council District 15.