One of the City of Carlsbad’s important tasks is to provide the best possible climate for businesses to thrive, and the purpose of the Economic Development Division is to help support local firms who make Carlsbad their home. The Economic Development staff provides a wide array of services, and to familiarize our local business community with these services the city has published a new “Economic Development Services Guide.” The guide is packed with information on how Economic Development staff can assist new and established businesses, addressing some frequently asked questions, and others not so frequently asked. As we all know, a key to business success is “location, location, location,” and location services is one of the things the city does best. The city’s Economic Development staff can assist new businesses seeking to locate in Carlsbad and guide established businesses seeking to expand. The city can search available properties for sale or lease and analyze whether a given location is suitable for any type of business considering that location. We can also compare different locations based on needs and then guide a customer through the permitting and regulatory process. Also, by contacting the city before signing a lease or purchase agreement on a particular building, a business can help avoid an unnecessary expense of making improvements to meet unexpected requirements. For businesses seeking to expand, city staff can help review goals to make sure the business is growing in the most efficient way possible and identify properties within Carlsbad where expansion plans can be executed most successfully. The city can also then connect a business to programs that can help offset expansion costs or to incubator lab space programs for startups. And if Carlsbad doesn’t have a building or office space that meets a firm’s needs, the city networks with four neighboring cities along state Route 78 – Escondido, Oceanside, San Marcos and Vista – to help find something in North County. This program, called “Innovate 78,” is a collaborative effort to retain jobs and businesses in North San Diego County. The guide also provides information on a topic that is near and dear to every business owner’s heart – money. The guide discusses financial resources, such as state programs that offer sales tax exemptions, or tax liability reductions for businesses that choose to remain in California. The guide also has information on federal funding for start-ups that produce goods and services that meet the needs of some federal agencies. The city realizes that developing and acquiring talent is vital to business success and has implemented programs to help businesses attract the talent they need. Carlsbad’s name is well-known in Southern California as San Diego County’s second largest high-tech hub, but it is not so well-known outside the region. To fix that Carlsbad has established Life in Action®, the city’s talent attraction brand, that showcases what it is like to live, work and play in Carlsbad. Our city supports a very active lifestyle, where a person can wake up at dawn to catch the morning surf break or clock in miles on their bike while training for a triathlon, before going to work. The Economic Development Services Guide offers suggestions on ways businesses can use the Life in Action® website to complement their recruiting efforts. Another way the city helps businesses fill their talent needs is by partnering with MiraCosta College to establish a Technology Career Institute, which is located in a city-owned building on Las Palmas Drive. The Technology Career Institute was developed in direct response to North County businesses who need skilled technicians in the manufacturing fields. Today the institute offers classes and certificates in such advanced skills as welding, machining, engineering technician, and computer numerical control (CNC) operation and programming. The 14-page Economic Development Services Guide is packed with this information and more. To get a copy, visit the City of Carlsbad Operations Center at 1635 Faraday Ave., or download one at www.carlsbadca.gov/business.