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Brown Stumps For Jobs Plan In San Diego

Audio

Aired 9/7/11

Governor Jerry Brown made a stop at San Diego biotech company today to stump for his recently announced jobs plan. Brown faces a tight timeline and Republican opposition.

— Governor Jerry Brown’s plan focuses on changing the corporate tax structure in California so corporations are taxed based on their sales in the state. Currently corporations can choose how their taxes are assessed from two different systems.

Governor Jerry Brown.

Above: Governor Jerry Brown.

Brown said the change would generate $1 billion in revenue. He would put the money toward tax credits for California companies that buy manufacturing equipment in the state.

But Republicans have resisted Brown's plan, calling it an increase on business taxes. Brown needs G.O.P. support to get the plan through the legislature. The governor acknowledges any compromise with the Republicans would change his plan somewhat, though he wouldn’t say what’s being considered.

"Any time you have legislation, it’s the work of more than one hand. So there are some Republicans who are already on board. And there’s active discussion by those individuals with other legislators of that party," he said. "So I’m reasonably optimistic we’re going to get something by the end of the week."

Brown needs it by then because that’s when the legislative session ends. He made his pitch at biotech company Gen-Probe, which manufactures products to screen blood. David Gollaher is CEO of the California Healthcare Institute, which advocates for biotech companies in the state. He said Brown’s measure would help the industry by providing manufacturing tax breaks.

"As it happens, the life sciences are one of the industries that America still preserves its lead in," Gollaher said. "But that leadership has never been more susceptible to threat than it is today."

Gollaher said a single piece of manufacturing equipment can costs thousands of dollars, which is why a tax break would be helpful. Brown said he wants to see California focus on manufacturing as a way to create more jobs for the state.

"I would like to find ways to emphasize making things. Making things for domestic consumption and also export," Brown said. "That’s something America and California has been failing at."

Brown's plan also calls for extending through 2013 a tax credit for small companies that hire more workers.

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