Data shows that Hollister is a bedroom community and half of the city’s workers leave the county for their job. Yet, to create a sustainable and thriving community, creating more business opportunities within San Benito County is critical.
What should local and county leaders do to create, foster or attract more business opportunities to San Benito County?
Susan Mullen: That is a great question and something we all should be putting a lot of thought to. What types of jobs are people leaving the county for? I guess that’s where we need to start. One thing I would like to see is that when developers come to the county they are required to bring streets, roads, safety (turn lanes, traffic signals) up to capacity and that we don’t build business or residential over the richest farmland in the world. Now, the important question is, what types of jobs do people leave the county for and can those jobs and relative salaries be recreated here or in the immediate area?
Rebeca Armendariz: Micro loans to small businesses, work with union apprenticeship programs, hold classes on how to start and maintain a small business—lots of stuff a city can do!
Catherine Eva Booth Vaughan: Give them the same tax breaks they are giving all of these developers. Give them liquor license. Get rid of the good ole boy attitude. Progress. Accept change. Elect educated politicians.
Diana Hogan Saigo: Silicon Valley has a lot of startups. I know a lot of folks in Hollister are working for major technology companies—if the city could somehow attract some of those type companies.
Nants Foley: If I could wave a magic wand, I would make the 400 block a beautiful urban park. I would cordon off San Benito Street from Fourth to South Streets and turn the vacant lot at Seventh Street into another park. I would create a pedestrian street—think Santana Row. I would also streamline the government process. We have a hideous reputation for being ornery, reactionary and impossible to navigate at both city hall and the two building departments.
Ruth Erickson: Business support agencies need to work closer together to bring in more industry and business. The city and county need to streamline regulatory processes.
The Question of the Week was sent in an email and posted on the Hollister Free Lance Facebook page on Monday, September 25. Thank you to all who contributed comments.