Hubzone’s president touts Nevada’s business climate
The president of an area manufacturing firm says California, where he has an associated business, can market sunshine but not a sunny business climate.Frank Dutra of Hubzone Manufacturing, Inc., in Minden, asked an audience at a Nevada Business Connections breakfast Wednesday a rhetorical question regarding what California offers business.“The answer is nothing,” he immediately replied. Later in his talk, he hedged on that just a tad, saying, “The only thing left there is sunshine.”Dutra said Nevada, meanwhile, is poised to take advantage of a “win-win” situation. He said employers such as Hubzone can pay 15 percent less to their Nevada employees than what workers are paid in the state to the west, but workers here still wind up with more “money left over at the end of the month.”Dutra, whose young business in Minden has six employees but the older one in California has 48, said any additional expansion will come in Nevada. He said in part that is because of government taxes, regulations and other California business burdens, which are less in Nevada.“The message is that manufacturing businesses such as mine are no longer welcome in the Sunshine State,” he said.He said Nevada manufacturing can grow as business equations change and some companies return from China or other offshore locations, and California runs off firms that locate or branch out elsewhere.He warned, however, that Nevadans must hold public officials accountable so the Silver State’s favorable business climate remains and the California influence is checked at the border.Kris Holt, NBC executive director, said Dutra opened Hubzone last year after he was courted by the private-sector development organization for about eight years. Holt said Dutra’s other firm, Advanced Machining Techniques, is in Morgan Hill, Calif., some 25 miles south of San Jose.The NBC breakfast gathering also heard a report on successes from Dean Haymore, Storey County Community Development director. “We’ve been surprisingly busy,” Haymore said, citing growth near Interstate 80 that since 2010 has included 34 new or expanding companies filling 3 million square feet of space. He said 1,795 jobs resulted.Those figures didn’t even include the latest successes, he said, which since November have resulted in six new companies and four expansions. Those filled 750,000 more square feet of space and added 500 or more jobs, Haymore said.“There are opportunities,” Haymore said. “We’re trying to think outside the box.”Ray Bacon of the Nevada Manufacturers Association, master of ceremonies at the NBC breakfast, said part of Haymore’s success stems from his willingness to provide prompt permits and work with firms to expand in or relocate to Storey County.