Three cheers for Fremont

A lot of council candidates have been saying that Fremont City Hall makes life tough for business owners. I forgot to mention that at the economic forum Friday morning, executives from Summerhill Homes, Solyndra and Lam Research said doing business in Fremont was a breeze.

That doesn’t necessarily mean the council candidates are wrong. Those companies are pretty big, and one would expect the city to be more flexible with them. It could be different for a small-time business owner.

Matt Artz


  1. Matt, my dad’s an entrepreneur, and he definitely sees Fremont as being difficult on small-businesses.

    The candidates aren’t just raising some non-issue to campaign on for the sake of it: there really is a problem.

  2. As a small business owner in Fremont and having worked with other cities in the bay area, there is a lot that can be done to improve the processes in place at City Hall. Unfortunately, our elected council members seem to have little influence on the day to day operations which fall under the aegis of the City Manager. I have yet to see the city put the applicant’s interests first when it comes to processing a permit application or in providing accurate guidance on getting things done.

  3. That’s an interesting point. Should the city planning department put the business applicant’s interest first or the community’s?

    Personally, I think the interests of both should be considered.

  4. I expect the planning department to address the community’s interests though the planning commission. My point was more about the lack of a predictable and repeatable process, the use of technology to streamline processes to make it easy to track your application status, external dependencies like consultants or contractors being away etc. I’m sure that extensive use of technology to implement efficient processes will enhance the image of the city and also make things easier. However, this at times is also viewed as reducing a workforce which I personally don’t buy since there is a lot that needs to be done.

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