The Coachella Valley Economic Partnership (CVEP) summit was held Friday Oct 22 and Seecon was proud to be the hospitality sponsor for such a prestigious and well attended event. Over 700 attendees ranging from politicians to small business owners filled the Renaissance Esmeralda to hear the longtime inland area economist John Husing give his yearly critique of the valley’s economic condition. This year he did it in true academic fashion by grading each industry.
Hotels and convention, D-minus
Clean Technology: C-plus
Creative Arts: B-minus.
Health Care: A-minus
Those areas that were low were not a surprise, they are low across the nation. The surprise is in some of the areas we see high grades. Agriculture, especially high cost fruits and vegetables is on the rise. The entertainment industry is rising in the valley especially in the production of films and commercials. Our other high marks are of no surprise. The valley has long been a retirement oasis and as such healthcare has always been an area focus.
The Economic Blueprint put out for the valley shows a strategic plan that includes high-value job creation and greater long-term sustainability. This is primarily to be done through education. All through the summit the underlying theme was that efforts from all areas, political, social, and business must focus on creating a highly educated workforce.
The keynote speaker Todd Buchholz, (President George W. Bush’s former director of economic policy) was dynamic, informative, and entertaining. Through graphs, maps, and cartoons he emphasized a global economy where competition for industry is worldwide. Using parallels of the old spice trade routes he showed the new products of information and services that run the same routes.
Also presented at the summit were these success stories:
Noble Renewables announced a $1.6 million solar plant installation on 1-acre of land at Xavier Preparatory College High School, and a ground lease it signed with Minnesota-based RenewTech to place a wind turbine assembly plant in Palm Desert.
Meanwhile, in the solar power realm, Noble Renewables will soon announce a 300-kilowatt system to be built on a prominent
Coachella Valley school campus. One of largest private solar systems in the valley to date, the system will begin generating power no later than the first quarter of 2011.
The College Access Foundation renewed its $1.4 million funding commitment, for the third year in a row, to support the scholarship program, Pathways to Success, program. That brings the funding level to $5 million to date.