The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation named Alhambra the “Most Business-Friendly City" in LA County with a population over 60,000. Cerritos won for a city with a population under 60,000.
“The cities of Alhambra and Cerritos best represent what can be achieved when our city governments work side by side with the business community to create business-friendly environments where quality jobs can grow," LAEDC president, Bill Allen said in a statement. "The ability and commitment of our local governments to attract and retain good jobs is absolutely essential if our region is to regain its economic vitality and sustain our quality of life in the future.”
From the Economic Development Corporation: "Located eight miles east of downtown Los Angeles, Alhambra is often referred to as the 'Gateway to the San Gabriel Valley.' The city offers a favorable combination of housing, business, employment and recreational opportunities. Alhambra’s Economic Development Element in its General Plan provides a blueprint to sustain and grow commerce and businesses including industrial and central business district project areas, financial assistance in redevelopment areas, land acquisition, negotiated sales, lease agreements with an option to purchase, rent subsidy, and rebates.
The business-friendly assistance Alhambra offers to businesses starts with the help and wealth of information found on the city’s website and extends to its timely customer service and modest and reasonable rates charged for business license and utility user tax and fees.
In partnership with the Alhambra Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Association, Alhambra hosts several programs each year to boost local businesses such as its Summer Jubilee and Taste of Alhambra. The recent Downtown make-over project included cityscape beautifying and free façade painting to businesses and restaurants in the area. The redevelopment efforts of Alhambra and its Redevelopment Agency have resulted in favorable impacts on the local economy by boosting property values, eliminating blight, and providing employment as well as new shopping, dining, and entertainment uses for the residents and the region. Alhambra was named a finalist in 2009, its first time entering the competition."
City Manager Julio Fuentes told the Pasadena Star-News: "We have worked hard to find potential tenants and then go out and match them to the best possible location…We also make it a priority to get new businesses through the process in a very short time."
Cities were evaluated based on:
Demonstrated commitment to economic development as a priorityExcellence in programs and services designed to facilitate business entry, expansion, andretentionEconomic development activity over the past three yearsCompetitive business tax rates and fee structuresAvailability of economic incentivesEffective communication with and about business clients
This was the fifth year the awards were presented.