California tax increase makes receptive to Perry message
Gov Perry said in a conference call that he was well received on his recruiting visit. He heard from businesses concerned about the burden put on them and their employees by Proposition 30 as well as the excessive regulations.
Austin has become a real tech business magnet and Texas is again the leading export state despite California's tech business. Gov. Perry also discussed how Texas infrastructure enabled companies like Caterpillar to move their heavy equipment to interstate markets as well as to ports for exports.
This report from Reuters gives a lot of the details on the trip and the sales pitch which they boil down to four words--"Texas is no California."
"The disenchantment runs deeper than I'm accustomed to," said Joseph Vranich, a consultant who helps companies move into and out of California.
Vranich said that since the election he has signed five new clients who want out of California, a process that usually takes one to two years, versus the seven he typically lands for an entire year.
Andrew Puzder, chief executive of CKE, said Perry personally lobbied to try to get the Carpinteria, California-based operator of Carl's Jr restaurants to plant its headquarters in Texas.
All governors are boosters for their states but Perry is much more, Puzder said: "He runs his state as an entrepreneur ... He views it as a competing business."
CKE aims to open 300 restaurants in Texas by the end of the decade, helped by its fast permitting. CKE will open restaurants in California but only "opportunistically," Puzder said.
Waste Connection Inc Chairman and CEO Ron Mittelstaedt moved the waste hauler's headquarters just over a year ago to The Woodlands, Texas, near Houston, from the Sacramento, California area. The company operates nationwide so it needs to be centrally located but Mittelstaedt said regulation also drove the move - as did Texas' pro-business culture.
"I'd take free-market capitalism over socialism any day, and that was the decision that we made," Mittelstaedt said.
He added that it took Waste Connections 16 months to design and build a new, 11-story building in Texas, including eight weeks for permits. He estimated it would have taken three years to just get the permits in California.The Woodlands is a mature 'new town' community north of Houston that has expanded rapidly from what started as a bedroom community and became a major business location around shopping and recreation areas. Californians have always been attracted to it, while New Yorkers and others from the Northeast have gravitated toward the planned community of Kingwood northeast of Houston. It has a more traditional look and feel, but also has great amenities. Then there are the tech communities around Austin and other Texas cities.
Gov. Perry added that he had heard from the owner of a New York based medical equipment provider looking to move who saw the story about the ad in California.