First Dates are fun. Relationships are better.
Two weeks ago, The Silicon Valley Leadership Group launched the “Silicon Valley Caucus,” an inaugural meeting between our 13 state senators and assemblymen who represent us in the state capitol, with more than 30 Silicon Valley CEOs.
Such is the concern about the success of California that these 30 CEO’s, competing globally, drove all the way to Sacramento for the two-hour meeting.
Like any “first date” the purpose of the initial conversation was to get acquainted, raise the broad challenges that inhibit economic development and job growth in the Golden State, and set the parameters for future dialogue.
We agreed to three more roundtables in 2011, in which we can dive deep on ways that the world’s innovation capital can best assist our representatives in the state capitol. Stay tuned. Only good can come from such collaboration.
Usually, there is excitement when an individual, a team, a company or a country declares “we’re number one.” Such a chant is often accompanied by a big foam finger elevated up to the sky.
Not so with the United States. When it comes to the world’s highest corporate tax rate, America is now “number one,” a dubious distinction that leaves American companies – and therefore American workers – uncompetitive abroad.
The U.S. corporate tax rate, adding in California’s additional rate, is 39.4 percent. Competitor nations average in the low 20′s.
Adding insult to injury, America is the only country in the world that double-taxes the profits American companies make while competing abroad. We pay the corporate rate in the country in which we do business, and then pay the U.S. rate that is left over if our company’s ever try to bring those earnings back to America’s shores. This broken system has trapped more than $1 trillion off-shore, unable to make it back home to stimulate the American economy.
Let’s get it right. Congress and the President should be fighting to make American employers more competitive globally, not less so. Overhaul America’s corporate tax code; incent companies to repatriate dollars earned overseas; grow America’s economy. For more details, visit “winamericacampaign.org”.
Launched during the Civil War, Caltrain commuter rail service has been a key component for commuters for 150 years.
In spite of strong ridership, this well-run rail line risks insolvency as it lacks a dedicated revenue stream, which almost every transit system in America enjoys.
Significant cuts are currently being proposed, with one option slashing service from 86 daily trains to just 48. With some hard work and creativity, we are hoping to minimize those cuts in the short term and add service in the long term.
To keep Caltrain strong, we need your feedback participation. Over the next six weeks, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group will host eight “town hall” meetings up & down the 79-mile Caltrain corridor.
We kick-off in Mountain View on April 11, with future town halls in Morgan Hill San Jose, Santa Clara and Palo Alto. Visit http://svlg.org/campaigns/savecaltrain/ for dates, times and details.
Caltrain serves 41,000 daily trips. We cannot afford to place those commuters back on the already congested 101 corridor. Let’s work together to ensure service cuts are minimized, and find creative ways to strengthen the system for the next 150 years.