SOURCE: San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation

June 25, 2012 16:26 ET

Business Organizations Collaborate to Unveil "Operation San Diego" to Address Defense Budget Cuts

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - Jun 25, 2012) - An unprecedented collaboration between San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, San Diego Chamber of Commerce and CONNECT -- in conjunction with San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC) -- unveiled a plan to address the federally-mandated defense spending cuts effective January 2, 2013. According to the San Diego Military Advisory Council's 2011 Economic Impact Study, the military supports 26 percent of total jobs in San Diego County, with Department of Defense spending translating into more than 350,000 jobs.

"Board members and leaders from our three organizations have come together to address one of our major economic concerns: the military," said Ruben Barrales, president & CEO of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. "Our collaborative determined that the immediate priority to ensure the economic prosperity of the region is the protection and growth of San Diego's defense assets. Partnering with SDMAC, we have created a framework to better understand and address these concerns," added Mark Cafferty, president & CEO of the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation.

The framework for "Operation San Diego" -- which the group has been working on since January 2012 -- takes into account many essential components, including protecting our assets, mobilizing the community, supporting military families and leveraging our innovation economy. San Diego business leaders have met with over 100 officials and stakeholders to emphasize San Diego's crucial stake in the national military economy.

"The end of two wars, serious budget pressures and new priorities for our national defense have converged to create a critical pivotal point for San Diego," said Duane Roth, CEO of CONNECT. "Although these budget cuts present an inevitable challenge, as a unified region, we have the unique opportunity to leverage our assets and lead San Diego and the nation through this transitional period."

For more information about the Operation San Diego, please contact Lisa Easterly at (619)234-8484 or le@sandiegobusiness.org

About the Collaboration
The San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, San Diego Chamber of Commerce and CONNECT, along with other partner trade organizations, have convened a coalition of senior business leaders from their board of directors and key contributors to focus on the global competitiveness of the region in the four fundamental economies -- Military, Innovation, Tourism, and Local.

About San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC)
San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC), is a nonprofit whose mission is to support, promote, and represent the common business and other interests of the military, their quality of life issues, and the defense industry community in the San Diego area. SDMAC works to advance the partnership and communication between the military, elected and appointed officials and the business community while working to enhance recognition of the military's many contributions to the greater San Diego area.