Victorville

SCLA leading city’s growth spurt, with more expected

By Shea Johnson
Staff Writer Follow @@DP_Shea
Posted Feb. 3, 2016 at 1:12 PM
Updated Feb 3, 2016 at 5:32 PM

VICTORVILLE — The city touted its economic growth during its annual address Wednesday, announcing that negotiations had concluded to draw a “major” manufacturer to Southern California Logistics Airport that will create 100 new jobs.

Construction also has started on a 444,740-square-foot building at SCLA that will accommodate new businesses, Mayor Pro Tem Jim Cox told the crowd at the early morning State of the City event at the Hilton Garden Inn.

Home to about 2,000 workers, the airport has grown into a hub of economic activity for the city in recent years. The nearly $6.5 million in fuel sales there last year — a sign of activity — topped figures in 2013 and 2014, and Cox said that number was expected to climb in 2016.

Additionally, 2,121 new citywide business license applications were received in 2015, a 30-percent increase over the prior year, while housing permits were up a whopping 300 percent from 2014.

“Now that the freeway is being completed through the Cajon Pass,” he said, “we do anticipate a flurry of activity, increased businesses — and especially in the housing industry.”

The projection should further aid sales tax revenue, which has been trending upward since 2010 despite still being lower than its high in 2006, officials said.

Conveying a bullish economic outlook, officials received the loudest applause for mentions of two smaller-scale openings this year: BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse on Feb. 15 and Krispy Kreme Doughnuts later.

The city is also working on core long-term projects to increase government transparency, including an open data policy, Mayor Gloria Garcia said.

Councilman Ryan McEachron touched upon planned infrastructure improvements, including future pavement rehabilitation at SCLA and sooner repairs on Bear Valley Road between Amargosa Road and Balsam Avenue.

City Councilman Eric Negrete said the city’s efforts to clean up the community, an initiative revisited earlier this month and first explicitly targeted in a strategic planning session, had resulted in the collection of 600 tons of trash and debris in 2015.

Through a program designed to deter illegal dumping and others, the city managed to rid the desert of more than 600 cars, 800 sofas, nearly 1,200 mattresses, 1,400 pounds of clothing and over 3,000 tires, Negrete said.

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