Category: Economy

Valley Children’s moving forward with plans for new Merced medical facility

Central Valley Business TImes

October 16, 2018

  • Will be on site of former police headquarters
  • “This is a great addition to the medical landscape”

Valley Children’s Healthcare has entered into negotiations to buy a 4.54-acre parcel in North Merced to create a specialty medical building. The Merced City Council unanimously approved the agreement at its Monday meeting.

The proposed purchase price is $2.1 million. The property is the former police headquarters site on the northwest corner of Yosemite Avenue and Mansionette Drive.

“This is a great addition to the medical landscape,” says Mayor Pro Tem Jill McLeod, a nurse practitioner. “Valley Children’s is a name that parents and doctors have trusted for decades, with caring, knowledgeable staff and excellent service. We are very fortunate to have them expanding their operations in Merced.”

Each year, more than 14,000 children from Merced County are cared for by Valley Children’s team of pediatric specialists. Since 1989, Valley Children’s has provided outpatient support  at Olivewood Specialty Care Center. Today, only 23 percent of outpatient visits are able to be made in Merced. A new pediatric primary and specialty care medical office in the city will expand that figure to 90 percent, the city says.

“As demands for pediatric services in Merced continue to grow, we are committed to keeping as many families as close to home as possible,” says Valley Children’s Healthcare President and CEO Todd Suntrapak. “Our ultimate goal is to have every family throughout the Valley be within 30 minutes or 30 miles from a Valley Children’s pediatric doctor, because that is what is bestfor kids and their families.”

“This ties in well to our existing medical community,” adds Economic Development Director Frank Quintero. “Mercy Medical Center is just blocks away, Golden Valley Health Center will be around the corner and we have other medical facilities nearby.”

Since 1989, Valley Children’s has operated a pediatric specialty care center in the city of Merced and since 1996, it has owned and operated a level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Mercy Medical Center. Valley Children’s Healthcare is one of the biggest pediatric healthcare networks in the country, serving more than 1.3 million children in 12 counties throughout Central California and the Central Coast.

The new outpatient center in Merced will offer several pediatric specialties, including pediatric cardiology and pediatric neurology. The first phase of the building would be 15,000 to  20,000 square feet and could grow to 40,000 square feet as demand for pediatric services increases.

It’s expected to have 50 to 60 full-time equivalent employees at build-out with salaries and benefits totaling $4-$5 million. Mr. Quintero says the purchase is just the first step in a long process before the medical center is constructed and opened.

“We will help them move through the planning and permitting process as quickly as possible, but Valley Children’s has several other projects ahead of us, so it will take some time before they have this one shovel-ready.”

The city purchased the property in 2010 with the intention of building the new police headquarters on the site. Construction was put on hold during the Great Recession and subsequently the site was re-evaluated and it was determined that the location wasn’t the best for a police station. The city purchased the Merced Sun-Star property on G Street for the police headquarters and decided to surplus the Yosemite Avenue land.

http://files.constantcontact.com/2cb20f61601/abecb6e8-5a01-407c-bc4d-acc97b11a634.pdf

New school for barbers and cosmetologists opens in Clovis

 

By Jason Oliveira

Monday, October 15, 2018 06:24PM

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) — For those looking to break into the cosmetology or barbering field Clovis’ Institute of Technology now offers a career training program.

Officials held a ribbon cutting ceremony Monday to help kick off the Academy of Hair Design.

“Right now I have nine barbers enrolled and four cosmetologists, there’ s definitely a high demand for barbering,” said Program Director, Ramanda Ramirez.

Officials say the resurgence in men’s grooming was enough to launch the program.

In fact, the employment of barbers is projected to grow 13% over the next eight years, that’s faster than the average for all occupations.

Joseph Guzman of Corcoran decided to sign up for the new program after seeing an online ad.

He’s now part of the Institute’s first wave of students learning cutting-edge hair styling techniques.

And it’s not just all about the locks, these students are taught skills that can help them market themselves on social media.

Officials say the 10-month course not only promises real work training and experience but the business skills needed to succeed after graduation.

The idea to enroll in the school’s new venture into cosmetology and barbering is what drew Alyssa Parish of Mendota to the program.

“It’s really nice, we get a lot of new things and everything is brand new and it’s high tech,” said Alyssa Parish.

Once again the course goes 10-months and costs just under $20,000.

Students can begin cutting hair for $5 beginning in December.

https://abc30.com/careers/new-school-for-barbers-and-cosmetologists-opens-in-clovis/4491811/

State should see strong economy through next year, economists say

Central Valley Business TImes

October 12, 2018

  • But may slow noticeably starting in 2020
  • Housing starts still next keeping up with populationgrowth

The California’s real gross state product is projected to grow at a 3.2 percent rate in 2018 and 2019, and average 2 percent annual growth for 2020 to 2022.

California’s record low unemployment rate of 4.2 percent is projected to fall further to a low of 3.9 percent in 2019 before gradually increasing. Non-farm payrolls are projected to grow at a 1.9 percent rate in 2018, and gradually decline to below 1 percent growth by the end of 2020.

Most of the Northern California metro areas covered in the forecast are growing faster than the state as a whole with the San Jose, Stockton, and Merced areas leading the way.

The continued pace of Bay Area growth is remarkable in light of its housing and labor force constraints as unemployment is below 3 percent throughout the region, the report says. The Bay Area spillover effects are helping to boost Central Valley areas, especially Stockton where new fulfillment and  distribution centers and a commuter-led boost in residential development are driving growth.

“Sacramento job growth has been slightly slower than other areas of Northern California, but we expect Sacramento’s government-based economy to maintain job growth at 2 percent in 2020 as percent growth in 2020 as recession risks grow.

  • The California unemployment rate is forecast to average 4.2 percent for 2018 and fall further below its record low to 3.9 percent in 2019 before gradually increasing.
  • Nonfarm payroll jobs will grow 1.6 percent over the next 12 months, dropping below 2 percent growth for the first time since 2011. Payroll growth will drop below 1 percent by late 2020 which is expected for an economy at full employment after a long expansion.
  • Health services has become the largest employment sector in the state after a period of rapid growth. Health services is projected to add more than 35,000 positions over the next 12 months, a slowdown from the 85,000 health services jobs added in 2017.
  • Professional scientific & technical services is a high-paying sector that has fueled the recovery, and is forecast to be a growth leader in 2019 adding over 60,000 jobs.
  • Growing tourism and a gradual shift in consumer spending from retail to restaurants has fueled rapid growth in the leisure and hospitality sector. This sector has added up to 75,000 jobs in recent years, but we project about 10,000 new jobs in each of the next few years as rising labor costs and low labor availability drives change in the hospitality sector.
  • State and local government employment experienced solid 2 percent employment growth from 2014 to 2017 as public budgets, especially in education, recovered. However, state and local government hiring will drop below 1 percent for the next several years in spite of revenue growth as these entities grapple with rising costs of pensions and other compensation.
  • Construction jobs have been growing rapidly in recent years as the hard hit sector continues to recover. “We expect a slight slowdown in construction job growth in 2019, about 20,000 new jobs compared to 40,000 to 50,000 in recent years,” the report says. “Job growth is limited by worker availability, and construction wages have been growing fast, and we expect job growth to pick up after 2019 as workers respond to higherwages.”
  • Single family housing starts are projected to surpass 65,000 this year and level off at around 75,000 in 2020 and beyond. Multi-family production is projected to be near 55,000 units this year and stabilize near this level. This projection of 130,000 new units per year will be enough to keep up with modest 0.7 percent projected annual population growth, but will not be enough to provide relief to California’s housing crisis. California’s population growth rate has declined to 0.7 percent and is projected to remain at this level through 2022. California’s population will reach 40 million next year, and is adding about 275,000 new residents per year.

About the report’s source:

The Center for Business and Policy Research at the University of the Pacific was founded in 2004 and was known as the Business Forecasting Center until March 2015. The Center is a joint program of the Eberhardt School of Business and the McGeorge School of Law programs in public policy and has offices at the Sacramento and Stockton campuses. The Center produces economic forecasts of California and eight metropolitan areas in Northern and Central California, in depth studies of regional economic and policy issues, and conducts custom studies for public and private sector clients.

For the full report:

https://www.pacific.edu/Documents/school-business/BFC/ Forecasts/CA%20Metro%20Forecast%20October%202018- E.pdf

South Valley Industrial Summit

Join us Wednesday, November 14th for the
optional pre-summit workshops offered free of
charge to industry partners. Come and learn about
new technologies and processes.
Thursday, November 15th is designed to be a
full-day event that will feature vendor booths,
keynote speakers, and various breakout sessions
offered by industry experts and practitioners.
Keynote Speakers
 President & CEO, California Dairies
 Faraday Future
 Surf Ranch, Kelly Slater Wave Company
NEW! Optional Pre-Summit Workshops
Nov. 14
 Lean Principles
 ABB Inc in Robotics
 Variable Frequency Drive Basics & Control Methods
 Intro to Machine Vision
 Safety Solutions: Introduction to Automation Safety

VALLEY UNEMPLOYMENT RATES DOWN IN AUGUST

Published On September 21, 2018 – 1:20 PM
Written By Gabriel Dillard

Central Valley unemployment rates continued to tumble in August, according to the latest data from the state Employment Development Department.

Fresno County’s unemployment rate for August was 6.6 percent, below 7.1 percent in July and 7.7 percent a year ago.

On the month-over basis, total employment increased by 500 jobs. Government employment saw the biggest drop with 3,000 jobs as schools recessed for the summer. Farms saw the largest increase with 1,800 jobs as harvest activity ramped up, while manufacturing gained 1,000 jobs.

On an annual basis, government saw the largest increase with 1,700 jobs, as did professional and business services with an additional 1,700 added to payrolls.

In Kings County, the unemployment rate for August was 6.7 percent, down from 7.4 percent in July and 7.7 percent a year ago.

Farms lost 100 jobs month-over-month, while government saw the largest bump with 400 additional positions.

Year-over-year, manufacturing hiring dipped by 700 jobs, while educational & health services saw the biggest spike with 300 jobs.

Madera County’s unemployment rate last month was 6.2 percent, down from 7 percent in July and 7.3 percent a year ago.

Farms added 1,100 positions month-over-month, while professional & business services employment shrunk by 100 positions.

On an annual basis, farm employment was unchanged while nonfarm industries added 1,200 jobs, led by educational & health services and government with 300 new jobs in each category.

Tulare County’s unemployment rate was 8.7 percent for August, down from 9.4 percent in July and 10 percent a year ago.

Farm employment dipped by 400 jobs month-over-month, while government had the biggest increase with 2,800 positions.

On an annual basis, farms added 3,700 jobs while professional & business services received the largest boost with 1,500 new positions.

California’s unemployment rate remained at 4.2 percent for the fifth consecutive month.

https://thebusinessjournal.com/valley-unemployment-rates-down-in-august/?utm_source=Daily+Update&utm_campaign=c3f93e52ea-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_09_21_07_08&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_fb834d017b-c3f93e52ea-78934409&mc_cid=c3f93e52ea&mc_eid=a126ded657

Merced may become part of a mega-region

Central Valley Business Times

Sept. 23, 2018

  • Would be one of 21 counties centered on Silicon Valley
  • “It’s not just about creating a bedroom community here”

A 21-county mega-region, centered on Silicon Valley, would incorporate many northern Central Valley counties and perhaps mean one of the biggest economic boosts to the Valley in its history.

“Today we are focusing on the economic potential of building greater interconnectedness, which would have major benefits to both regions,” says University of California, Merced Chancellor Dorothy Leland. “It’s not just about creating a bedroom community here. We will be attracting businesses and industries that will help lift Merced, the Valley and the state.”

The proposed Northern California “mega-region” would connect the Central Valley to the Bay Area and Silicon Valley, according to Bay Area Council President Jim Wunderman. In all, 21 counties would be grouped into four regions: Bay Area, Sacramento Area, Norther San Joaquin Valley and Monterey Bay Area.

The mega-region would possess one of the fastest-growing economies in the nation and allow for more interconnectivity and innovation, he says. Mr. Wunderman says projects like high-speed rail would help create stronger and more profitable partnerships for the entire mega-region.

“When you look at the Central Valley and the Bay Area, you think of separate places that are far away,” Mr. Wunderman says. “Once that transportation connection is complete, the game is going to change.”

He cited Merced as a potential hub because of its proximity to where the proposed high speed rail line would connect from north and south to the Bay Area.

http://files.constantcontact.com/2cb20f61601/922a98e4-a025-4ffa-83e6-94afee083081.pdf

Incomes in the Central Valley are way up. What’s behind the bigger paychecks?

September 30, 2018 03:00 AM

Updated September 30, 2018 03:00 AM

Adventist Health to build new hospital in northwest Bakersfield

Adventist Health will be building a new hospital in Northwest Bakersfield.

Sharlet Briggs, president/CEO of Adventist Health Bakersfield, said the hospital will be built off Coffee Road near Brimhall Road, next to what will become the Bakersfield Commons, a 250-acre mixed-use development that will include retail, residential, recreational and other types of space.

Briggs said the new hospital, which will be the third in Kern County once the new Tehachapi hospital opens, is still in the early stages of planning, with construction work expected to start in 2021 for an opening in 2024.

“At Adventist Health, we’re known for our quality,” she said. “As we look at opening a new site, we take that with us there. We look at how do we take the best, safest care available to our citizens of Bakersfield and Kern County? That’s our responsibility.”

Briggs said hospital employees were notified about the new facility last week and will be having talks with them to get their feedback on the new hospital.

Briggs said Adventist Health is still looking into what kind of specialties the hospital will have and what is most in need.

“We’ll get our employees involved, our physicians involved and the community involved in really defining what this next hospital is going to be,” she said.

Why a new hospital in town? Briggs said the current hospital off of Chester Avenue in downtown Bakersfield has been near or exceeded capacity with the 254 beds it provides for years. She said the hospital has considered a new facility in town for the past several years.

“We keep looking at how can we better serve the community so that next patient who walks into the hospital has a bed ready for them,” she said. “This has been on our radar for a long time, and now we’ve gotten approval to move forward.”

Briggs said the new facility won’t be as large as the downtown hospital. She said Adventist Health will be hiring workers for the hospital but said the exact number of hires has yet to be determined.

https://www.bakersfield.com/news/breaking/adventist-health-to-build-new-hospital-in-northwest-bakersfield/article_b988aa4a-b60a-11e8-8b72-e75817c3886a.html?utm_source=bakersfield.com&utm_campaign=%2Fnewsletters%2Fbreaking%3Ffast-method&utm_medium=email&utm_content=read%20more

You can get a job at Caltrans in two days. It still has 1,100 openings.

 

 

By Adam Ashton

September 12, 2018 05:15 AM

 

Forget the stereotypes of California state government’s painfully slow process for hiring new workers.

This summer, it was possible to walk into a Caltrans hiring fair and leave with a job offer.

Motivated by a wave of retirements and an urgency to fill new positions created by the state’s gas tax increase, Caltrans devised a bureaucracy-defying human resources program that let it bring on hundreds of new employees at a time during hiring events. Almost 600 people have joined the department through those two-day job fairs.

“It was a very quick turnaround,” said Andy Chou, 29, a new Caltrans structural engineer who went to a hiring fair at Sacramento State in May had a job offer within days. He started work last month. “I was definitely surprised by” the speed of the department’s hiring.

There’s more good news if you know someone looking for a job – Caltrans still has another 1,100 vacancies.

The rush to hire comes mainly from Senate Bill 1, the 10-year gas tax and vehicle fee increases the Legislature adopted in 2017 to fund a decade’s worth of transportation projects.

Voters in November will see a bid to repeal the tax on the ballot which would jeopardize funding. So far, unions, contractors and local governments working to defend SB 1 have raised more than $26 million to defeat the repeal. Groups that want to repeal the tax have raised about $2.5 million.

Caltrans is moving forward as if the repeal initiative would fail, and is filling jobs at a fast clip. The state budget Gov. Jerry Brown signed in June sets Caltrans on track to add 1,150 new positions over the next 11 months, up from 19,109 last year.

“We are making a dent,” said Michelle Tucker, the department’s human resources director. “I’m really pleased with the innovative hiring techniques we’ve done this summer.”

California’s web site for applying for state jobs – jobs.ca.gov – has been redesigned to guide applicants through the hiring process.

It’s racing to add staff in a hot economy in which other engineering firms and local governments also are bulking up.

“They need design staff to deliver state highway projects,” said Ted Toppin, executive director of Professional Engineers in California Government. “That’s what Californians expect. Right now they’re competing with other state and local departments and the private sector for engineers, so the need to on-board them is real or they’re going to lose them.”

Caltrans had a long-approaching retirement wave, especially among its engineering ranks. In 2016, the average age of the state’s civil engineers was 51, and 52 among electrical engineers.

Meanwhile, the Brown administration shrank the headcount at Caltrans over much of the past decade. The department had 10,143 employees in the division that plans road projects in 2013. That number shrank to about 7,000 two years ago. It’s expected to grow again to 8,700 by next year.

“The department did not hire engineers and related staff for over 10 years,” Toppin said. “From 2007 to 2017 they sort of shed 3,500 positions,” he said. “Year after year, it was no replacement of folks who retired, so they’re an older workforce.”

PECG’s three-year contract that expired in July also did not give engineers a reason to stay. Brown did not commit to a raise this year when his administration negotiated the contract with the union in 2015.

Between July 2017 and July 2018, 922 Caltrans employees retired.

PECG’s new contract includes some incentives that would keep longtime engineers in the workforce developing projects funded by the gas tax increase, including an immediate 4.5 percent raise and an escalating seniority differential that rises to an extra 5.5 percent for engineers with 23 years of experience at Caltrans by 2021.

Caltrans crafted four rapid-hiring events it held this year with the state human resources department. They allowed people to apply for jobs in person, be interviewed by panels of managers, have their qualifications reviewed and references checked within two days. If they passed, they’d walk out with a conditional job offer.

“We’re able to do hundreds of interviews in a day,” Tucker said.

Usually, landing a state job takes much longer. The only other state departments that regularly use rapid-hiring events are the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the Prison Industry Authority, Cal HR spokesman Andrew LaMar said.

Jeff Wiley, Caltrans’ assistant division chief for project management, said the department has been attracting engineers with a range of experience, from new graduates to veterans from other states.

The department and PECG negotiated a compromise to get more experienced engineers working on projects as soon as possible. The agreement lets Caltrans slightly increase the amount of work it sends to private contractors, although the department has not yet exceeded its traditional outsourcing cap.

“We’ve got some plans out for making those goals,” Wiley said.

Toppin said the agreement was reasonable considering the department’s “sudden increase in revenue” and shortage of experienced engineering staff.

 

Read more here: https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article218170925.html#storylink=cpy

Faraday Future announces mass hiring

 

JULISSA ZAVALA

Sep 12, 2018

HANFORD — Faraday Future officials welcomed newly hired employees Tuesday at its Hanford factory and have announced even more hiring efforts.

The announcement comes just in time, as the first pre-production FF 91 luxury electronic vehicle was recently built at the Hanford facility, which is located in Hanford’s Industrial Park.

Vince Nguyen, director of human resources and recruiting – product and technology at Faraday Future, said the company has hired around 100 employees to work in the Hanford facility and ultimately hopes to employ around 1,000 people by mid-2019.

 

Currently, Nguyen said a majority of the new hires have original equipment manufacturer (OEM) backgrounds and the company is looking for talented individuals who have experience in that area, especially locals.

“There really are a lot of genuine listings for Hanford on the corporate [website], so it’s not just a small part, there’s significant hiring going on right now,” said Matt Davis, senior manager, product communications.

Hanford City Manager Darrel Pyle attended the announcement and spoke with the employees. When he asked the group of about 50 people how many of them had grown up in the Valley, a majority of them raised their hands.

Pyle told them he never would have expected a company like Faraday Future to locate in the Central Valley.

 

“We’ve got some big businesses here in the Valley, but I can tell you none of them generate the interest in Hanford that you have,” Pyle said. “You have not put Hanford on the map, you have put us on the globe.”

Pyle said the most exciting aspect is that this is only the first wave of employees to step into this new venture and he can’t wait for more people to jump at the opportunity.

https://hanfordsentinel.com/news/local/faraday-future-announces-mass-hiring/article_4314db09-7e81-5a85-8ceb-37d08404c14a.html#tracking-source=home-top-story