Supervisor's Corner with Bob Williams and Steve Chamblin, Spring 2019
1 May 2019
Greetings and welcome to another issue of “Supervisors Corner”. As we write this issue, it’s rodeo week in Tehama County with the annual Red Bluff Round-Up. This event, one of the largest three-day rodeos in the world, attracts competitors and visitors from all over the globe to our beautiful rural area and is a huge benefit to our local economy. Be sure to mark your calendars for this annual celebration of western tradition that takes place every year on the third weekend of April.
Our Economic Development team has been quite busy since our last report. We’re happy to report that our determination has paid off in some areas and that we endeavor to work through our existing task list. Never ones to rest on our laurels, our team continues to look for innovative new projects and challenges that will help to promote economic development in Tehama County. As with our last report, we’d like to share an update on what we have done, where we are with ongoing efforts, and where we plan to go in the near future.
We are proud to announce that the Tehama County Capitol Display has been completed and installed in the State Capitol in Sacramento! Thanks to the efforts of team members Caylyn Wright and Amanda Jenkins, and through the exceptional work and creativity of Joe and Heather Vine, we now have a beautiful, bright, eye-catching display in the Capitol for all to see.
On April 3, we were joined at the Capitol by staff from Senator Nielsen’s office, Assemblyman Gallagher’s office, Rural County Representatives of California (RCRC) and North Valley Services to do a ribbon cutting and unveiling celebration of our new display. Since that day, we have received numerous positive comments from visitors to the Capitol, Legislators, staff and even a special Facebook “shout out” from our Board of Equalization representative, Malia Cohen. Some of our neighbor counties have even inquired as to who did the design and build for us, as they are planning updates to their own window displays. We would like to thank all of those who have reached out to us and expressed their admiration of our display, and especially to Joe and Heather Vine for lending us the use of their exceptional talents.
Manton Wineries Wayfinding Sign
Again, thanks to the efforts of Senator Nielsen and his staff, the wayfinding sign on Highway 36 that will direct visitors in the area to the Manton wineries has been approved. We have left it in the capable hands of the wineries and their association to work with CalTrans to design and place the new sign on Highway 36 and hope to see the installation sometime in the near future.
Opportunity Zone Developments
As we began looking at the newly created Opportunity Zone in the south county, it became apparent to all of us that we needed several things in order to make the area more attractive to investors. Working with 3Core Economic Development from Chico, we have worked up a plan to develop a prospectus for the area that will provide interested parties information regarding available land, zoning, infrastructure, housing costs, available workforce and other needed information that will hopefully draw potential developers and businesses to our area.
In order to pay for the development of this prospectus, 3Core has offered to administer a grant application to EDA that will provide the majority share of the funds for this project. We are working with the City of Corning and the Paskenta Band of Nomlaki Indians to spread the local cost share and have even decided to work in cooperation with the City of Orland and Glenn County to take a regional approach and spread the local share even further, since Glenn County’s opportunity zone is contiguous with ours. This tool could prove to be a huge factor towards economic benefit to all parties involved.
Future and Ongoing Projects
As was stated in our last column, we continue to see a need for improved infrastructure and we continue to look at areas that lack infrastructure, as well as areas that need improvement. Water and sewer availability, good roads, adequate cell phone service, and high-speed broadband are challenges that everyone faces in attracting business development and the jobs that go with it. Our Public Works and Planning Departments continue to look into infrastructure and zoning needs within Tehama County, while our Economic Development and Jobs Creation team continues to work with CSU Chico, broadband developers and local internet service providers to find ways to improve internet speeds and increase coverage for our citizens. We’re happy to report that AT&T, Epic Wireless and Varcomm are working together on plans to construct a new tower in Rancho Tehama that will provide cell phone coverage and improved internet speeds for Rancho Tehama and a largely unserved/underserved part of rural southwestern Tehama County.
Again, our goal is to see existing business thrive and to attract new businesses that will provide good paying jobs for our citizens. We will continue to work towards that goal and with support from the community, we will succeed.