The message at the annual Economic Resource Council Economic Summit was similar to that of the classic baseball movie Field of Dreams. “If you build it, they will come”… and it referred to housing as a barrier to workforce development. Renowned economist Dr. Christopher Thornberg was the keynote speaker Monday evening as he addressed both global and local economic development issues. He says the local economy is effected by the desirability to live in Nevada County, but more opportunities to do so while working remotely for companies out of the areas is keeping home prices high. It presents an interesting dichotomy of high income residents versus lower wages for people in entry level jobs.
Thornberg says that more housing is an answer, but it cannot just be more low income housing, it has to be a combination of mixed building to accommodate the changing workforce.
Grass Valley Mayor Ben Aguilar, echoed the speakers message and gave examples of new developments around Grass Valley.
Dr. Thornberg was the keynote speaker at the event which also included presentations from the Kristin York of the Sierra Business Council as well as a housing expert Jordan Levine.