Laura has demonstrated that the arts can serve as a powerful economic development tool. She was instrumental in transforming the San Fernando Corridor into a business and job creation engine for Glendale through her “Creative Corridor” program, which offers specialized incentives to attract creative businesses and flexible zoning guidelines to allow a variety of uses. The program is so successful that the Glendale News Press called the Creative Corridor “The City’s Economic Bright Spot.” Recently she supported the hiring of a consultant to create a City sponsored technology incubator program to attract new businesses to Glendale.
During the recession Laura created the GATE project, which transforms temporarily vacant spaces into art exhibitions to provide an innovative cultural exploration for the community, while eliminating the blighting effect of vacant storefronts. This led to a more vibrant downtown while assisting property owners to better highlight available spaces.
Laura helped create an Arts Impact Fee for new developments which to date has raised millions of dollars to fund arts programs in Glendale. Laura has voted to fund large capital programs for the historic Alex Theater, for the Brand Music Library, and was instrumental in bringing the Museum of Neon Art and the world-renounced Anteaus Theater Company to Glendale. She retooled Glendale’s library program to make the arts an important priority of the Library system.
Laura is committed to fully fund education at all levels to insure that California continues to lead the world in technology, entertainment and other creative industries. She will bring the arts back to our schools. Laura is committed to making the arts as much a focus of primary and secondary school as the other STEM programs so that we prepare students for a future in which creative capital is at a premium worldwide. In addition, she believes in offering free courses at community colleges to prepare film and other creative professionals for changes in technology. We will only be a leader in a global economy if we continue to have individuals who have the creativity to create the next Apple or feature film blockbuster, and Laura is committed to giving our children the tools to succeed.