A week of local business assistance-related events and activities is being sponsored by the City of Chula Vista's Local Employer Assistance Program (LEAP) from July 30 through Aug. 2. Events will include a business fair and mixer, workshops about storefront merchandizing and coping with high energy costs and a business appreciation luncheon.
Activities begin on July 30, with a 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. workshop on storefront merchandizing. That afternoon and the following day, individual company storefront assessments with a specialized trainer and a designer/artist will take place. Space for 12 participants in the assessment program are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration forms are available at the Downtown Business Association office, Southwestern College's Small Business Development Center, the Chamber of Commerce and the city's Community Development Department.
On July 31 from 6 to 8:30 p.m., the City of Chula Vista is partnering with Southwestern College to host a seminar called "Lights Out: The California Energy Crisis and Your Business." The event will feature Kent Burnes, a nationally-known business development consultant. Registration forms are available at the Small Business Development Center and the Community Development Department. A Business Appreciation Luncheon will be held on Aug. 1 to honor companies that participated in the city's on-site visitation program during the past year. Company representatives will receive recognition for their valuable contributions to the community in a ceremony lead by Chula Vista's Mayor, City Council and City Manager.
LEAP week culminates on Aug. 2, with the City of Chula Vista's second annual LEAP Fair from 4 to 8 p.m. in the courtyard at the Civic Center Complex, 276 Fourth Ave. This year, the event is being held in conjunction with the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce's monthly business mixer. More than 30 local and regional business assistance providers as well as a number of city representatives will be present to answer questions and provide information. Admission is free and the event is open to all Chula Vista businesses.
Exhibitors will provide information on issues that affect the bottom line of nearly every local business during the LEAP Fair, including workforce development, financing, contracting and marketing. Also participating will be providers of specialized services ranging from import/export assistance to recycling information. New this year will be free seminars on energy conservation, small business finance, cash flow analysis and storm water management. Man of the services to be featured are no cost or low cost.
"Many companies don't know about the wide range of resources that are available or how to access them," said Mayor Shirley Horton. "The LEAP Fair brings a variety of public and private business assistance organizations together to help Chula Vista's companies. It's one of the many steps the city is taking to make sure we have a strong, vital business community."
In addition, a number of City of Chula Vista departments will have demonstrations and representatives available to discuss services such as permit processing, business licensing, recycling, mass transit, storm water regulations, redevelopment incentives and site selection assistance.
The fair also will feature food vendors and entertainment stages, with local caterers showcasing items from their menus and the Montgomery High School Street Drum Band and alternative pop group "Lighter" performing during the event. A number of Chula Vista firms are donating prizes for a raffle drawing.
To date, more than 50 Chula Vista businesses have been assisted and more than 700 new jobs will be created as a result of the City's comprehensive LEAP program. For more information on LEAP or for additional business assistance information, call the Community Development Department at (619) 691-5047.