The Pacoima area has been included in the expanded boundaries of the Los Angeles Central/Hollywood enterprise zone, the governor’s office announced Monday. The move preserves an area of the San Fernando Valley in which businesses located within the boundaries receive tax incentives for hiring local residents. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger credited working with the city and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his staff for reconfiguring the enterprise zone to include Pacoima. “The addition of the Pacoima area strengthens the region’s economic development activities and allows incentives to remain in place to promote business expansion and job growth,” Schwarzenegger said in a prepared statement. The governor understood why the enterprise zone is so critical to economic development in the Valley and the city, said Bruce Ackerman, president and chief executive officer of the Economic Alliance of the San Fernando Valley. “Carving it down to a smaller manageable piece which keeps a bulk of where the real need is is going to make it a lot better and a lot easier to manage as well,” Ackerman said. In November, business leaders in the Valley were taken by surprise when the Northeast Valley Enterprise Zone was not renewed by the state. The zone was created in 1986 and renewed in 2001. The boundaries included much of Pacoima and portions of Sun Valley and Panorama City. Businesses within the boundaries were eligible for local tax incentives, the most popular being an employee tax credit of $31,000 per employee over a five-year period. About 165 businesses use that tax credit. Others include a rebate on sales tax for certain equipment and parts purchases; a business expense deduction capped at $20,000; and a five-year subsidy from the L.A. Department of Water and Power.
BREAKING NEWS: Pacoima Enterprise Zone Gets New Life