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Will Oakland Chamber support Brown’s budget?

By Josh Richman
Monday, March 7th, 2011 at 5:49 pm in Jerry Brown, Oakland, pension reform, state budget, taxes.

The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce endorsed Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget plan today. The Bay Area Council endorsed it Friday. The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce endorsed it last month. And even the California Chamber of Commerce’s president has voiced some cautious support for the framework.

Yet there’s been only silence so far from the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, representing the city where the governor used to be mayor.

Joe HaraburdaOakland Chamber President and CEO Joseph Haraburda said the silence won’t last much longer.

“We expect to (announce a position) in the next 48 hours, I would expect,” Haraburda said when reached at home this evening. “Check back with us late tomorrow or early the following day, and we’ll probably have something for you.”

The San Francisco Chamber issued a news release issued this afternoon announcing its support of Brown’s proposed special election and budget package “contingent upon pension, regulatory and other reforms that will bring long-term fiscal stability and economic growth to California,” much the same as the Bay Area council had on Friday.

“Governor Brown’s proposed budget cuts and tax extensions will be painful for the businesses and people of California,” San Francisco Chamber President & CEO Steve Falk said in the release. “However, we must address the budget crisis now to restore our state’s fiscal health in the future. It’s time to put the Governor’s proposal to a vote and move towards a bipartisan solution that is good for California.”

But while the Bay Area Council had seemed to reluctantly accept Brown’s plan to eliminate local redevelopment agencies and enterprise zones to redirect their money toward the $26.6 billion state budget deficit, the San Francisco Chamber is still pushing for some other solution.

“Redevelopment agencies and enterprise zones are critical tools to transform neighborhoods, create jobs and stimulate economic growth,” Falk said. “San Francisco has been successful in leveraging these tools for some of our city’s most significant projects including Mission Bay, the Bayview Hunters Point Shipyard, the Transbay Transit Center and many others. We encourage the Governor, the Legislature and the voters to preserve these important resources.”

I’m sure this, and pension reform, will figure heavily in the Oakland Chamber’s position as well.

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