Greetings Members & Associates,
Hopefully all of your New Year’s resolutions have maintained themselves as we now move steadily through the hump of the 1st quarter of 2015. The good news is that even though the groundhog saw his shadow in the North East, he clearly didn’t here in the beach friendly weather of Southern California. The bad news is that as a result of the challenges and opportunities that lay in store for the industry and our association, many of us will not have much time to enjoy it.
Already we have seen several fee studies from various jurisdictions throughout the County coming through the pipeline. These are also coming at a time for the industry that couldn’t be more volatile than right now. This morning national data showed that specifically single family residential building notably declined from what had been a relatively small peak last year post recession. Here in Riverside County we have been holding steady. Had it not been for the proportionally sharp increase in permits throughout the Greater Coachella Valley region, Riverside County would have lagged behind last year. Additionally Western Riverside County’s activity has still virtually seen no change in development activity from previous years.
That being said, there are great areas of opportunity throughout the County. Menifee’s business climate has significantly improved and activity there is strong. In Beaumont, in spite of the City Staff’s attempts to increase fees, the City Council has continued to resist, and in Indio we are seeing rapid responsible growth. Our partnerships that our association has developed throughout Riverside County are paying off and we can always be more effective.
Definitely keep your eyes and ears open if rumors of concern should come your way so our Staff at the BIA can get right on those issues. Also, information provided by you to our staff to engage with jurisdictions regarding fees and policy issues have proved invaluable in the past. If your projects are in areas where these concerns exists please don’t hesitate to respond to requests. Timing is often of the essence.
Lastly, the silver lining to all of this is that business is steady and the BIA will do everything within its power to keep it that way to insure that the supply and demand is optimal.
We are responsible for all of the roads, police stations, parks, trails, schools and infrastructure that everyone cheers for at the Ribbon Cutting with the fees our industry pays and people should know that. Don’t be afraid to communicate that to everyone you come in contact with. When confronted with neighbors that have issues with a project, a campaign highlighting the good things set to come their way can go a long way. This should be a good year, let’s see to it that it is.
Jay Pierce, President
Building Industry Association of Southern California
Riverside County Chapter