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    City Mgt. Names Official w/ County's Affordable Housing & Community Dev'ment Agency As LB's New Mgr. of Economic Development

    (February 12, 2005) -- LB city management has selected Robert Swayze to serve as its Manager of Economic Development within the Dept. of Community Development.

    Mr. Swayze is currently Manager of Economic Development for L.A. County's Community Development Commission (LACDC).

    LACDC's web site describes the agency as L.A. County's "affordable housing and community development agency," providing "a range of services to improve the quality of life in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods" and encouraging "job creation and retention through a variety of programs, including commercial/industry lending, neighborhood revitalization, incubators, redevelopment areas and economic incentives."

    City Hall's release says Mr. Swayze's principal responsibilities at CDC included managing the LACDC's "industrial and commercial lending activities, including the nation's largest county-operated commercial and industrial revolving loan funds. These loan programs have placed over $85 million in business loans in the past decade."

    The release indicates Mr. Swayze also managed "two business incubators, including California's largest technology incubator, the Business Technology Center (BTC), and the Athens Westmont Business Center. The BTC was one of 14 projects nationwide that received special awards from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the 30th anniversary of the Community Development Block Grant program. BTC firms have attracted over $65 million in venture capital."

    LACDC's web site also says the agency "supports local economies through economic incentives, such as tax incentives and hiring credits for businesses in select areas, including state Enterprise Zones and a federal Empowerment Zone."

    As the County's Housing Authority, the CDC administers Section 8 rental subsidy and public housing developments for the County. Other CDC functions include affordable housing development and preservation, Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) administration and economic development and redevelopment. The CDC also provides development and construction assistance.

    Mr. Swayze has been with the LACDC since 1991...and in his current management position since 1997.

    A City Hall release says Mr. Swayze was selected from a very strong group of candidates after a national search. "Robertís familiarity with the local area, combined his strong background in international trade and technology made him the unanimous choice of the finalists," said Melanie Fallon, Community Development Director (who has announced her retirement, effective in May).

    Effective Feb. 22, Mr. Swayze will take over LB's Economic Development Bureau, which has 28 employees and an $8.5 million budget. It has oversight for Commercial and Retail expansion and retention and Business Development.

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