Capitol Alert
The latest on California politics and government
August 17, 2011

FRESNO — Gov. Jerry Brown said today that he and legislative leaders are considering a series of measures to address California’s persistent unemployment, suggesting he has a jobs plan but declining to discuss it in detail before talking with lawmakers Thursday morning.

“We have a series of things that we’re doing,” the Democratic governor said between meetings in Fresno. “Some are bills, and some are actions, and some are proposals.”

Brown said in his gubernatorial campaign last year that growth in renewable energy could create at least 500,000 jobs, and he has increasingly talked about clean energy since passage of the state budget. Earlier today, Brown appointed former bank executive Michael Rossi to be his top jobs adviser.

Brown said in a lengthy speech to civic leaders this afternoon that Rossi’s appointment is to ensure the state is responsive to business.

With California’s unemployment rate around 12 percent, politicians are lining up with jobs plans.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, said earlier this week that creating jobs would be his top priority in the last four weeks of this year’s legislative session. His proposal includes changes to the state regulatory process, including permitting changes.

Meanwhile, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom has offered his own jobs plan, proposing to create a Cabinet-level economic development office and to increase state emphasis on foreign trade.

In Fresno, Brown defended the state budget as necessary to stabilize California’s finances and called the Wall Street credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s improved outlook for California a “mark of the power of the budget that I signed.”

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