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City Desk: Jan. 15, 2014

Santa Clara Rated a Top City for Young Professionals

A November 2013 study by financial website CreditDonkey.com ranks Santa Clara as one of its top California cities – number 4 out of 130 – for young adults in California. The ranking is based on median salary for college graduates, percent of residents between 20 and 34, and crime rates.

Here’s how Santa Clara stacks up, according to the report. “The area offers a median salary of $77,290 for college graduates and a low crime rate of 1.9 violent crimes per 1,000 residents. Plus, nearly a quarter of the local population falls between ages 20 and 34.” Another plus is that Santa Clara is home to Intel, which Forbes ranks as the fourth “happiest company for young professionals.”

Only Sunnyvale, Mountain View, and Irvine – numbers 1,2, and 3 respectively – ranked higher than Santa Clara. Sunnyvale and Mountain View showed slightly higher median salaries – around $80,000 – and youthful populations, while Irvine offered a lower crime rate – 0.5 percent compared with 1.9 percent.

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The report, which gets its data from the U.S. Census Bureau, is available at www.creditdonkey.com/young-adults-california.html.

Santa Clara: A Great Place to Plug In

Because it answers to the ratepayers of Santa Clara, instead of to Wall Street, Silicon Valley Power (SVP) can invest all its profits back into the community, making the city an attractive place to do business.

“A vibrant business economy provides multiple benefits to the community, including jobs and tax revenue, and opportunities for growth,” says Silicon Valley Power Director of Customer Service, Larry Owens.

For a start, that means lower overhead — from $0.10 to $1.00/sf savings every month – because of the utility’s lower rates. But that’s only the beginning. SVP offers many other services that make Santa Clara a great place for businesses to plug in.

Another top reason is the utility’s dark fiber network,* featuring extremely high bandwidth – 1 Gigabit, 50x the typical consumer or business-grade Internet connection – that assures fast and reliable communications connections to support the trend toward bundling communications services, as well as the exponential growth of cloud computing and mobile services.** Plus the utility offers flexible pricing, on-demand support, and 24/7 monitoring.

“Our fiber system has grown remarkably over last years,” reports Owens. “We now connect with 33 data centers in Santa Clara, so we’re helping businesses with high bandwidth needs to connect to the Internet and each other with low cost services.

“Santa Clara has become a very fiber-rich city, not only through SVP but through other carriers’ investments as well,” he continues. “That makes it an attractive place for businesses with high bandwidth needs. A local business can be a world-wide business through the connectivity that’s available here.” Another attraction is Santa Clara’s free municipal WiFi, making it easy for businesses’ customers to stay connected, as well.

Facilities managers can take advantage of the free SVP Energy Insider online portal of technical business and engineering information, which includes targeted research and benchmark industry data, plus a free “Ask an Expert” hotline.

SVP also offers a portfolio of support services that make operating a power-wise business in the city easy.

Free energy surveys identify ways to reduce energy usage and costs across the operation. Small Business Efficiency Services bring small businesses turnkey services to manage energy efficiency upgrade projects from start to finish, while rebates can reduce capital costs and accelerate return on investment.

The SVP Trade Ally Network gets business connected with contractors who are knowledgeable about SVP’s energy efficiency rebates and incentives, and who are actively assisting SVP customers to reduce their energy consumption and save money.

“These contractors are very familiar with our programs, and how they differ from those offered by other service providers,” Owens explains.

For businesses on the move, the Bright Start program helps new tenants move into Santa Clara business properties that already have energy-saving equipment installed. “It’s the same as the Efficiency Services, but designed for business moving to a new space in Santa Clara,” he says. “We help them assess what they have and what they can do before they’ve moved into the space.”

The program also provides promotional incentives – up to 130 percent of normal rebate levels – for brokers, property managers, owners, and prospective tenants to upgrade facility lighting and HVAC for lower-energy consumption.

SVP’s programs have been well received by businesses small and large, according to Owens, saying, “Businesses are favorable to any help they can get that will increase the quality and comfort of their space.”

For more information, visit siliconvalleypower.com/index.aspx?page=1897.

*Dark fiber means the physical fiber-optic cable, but not the services – phone, Internet, media – carried on it. This creates a more diverse and competitive market because many providers can offer end-user services.

**Cloud and mobile computing may connect with the end user wirelessly, but at some point that data traffic is carried on a wire to the Internet – called the backhaul.

Walmart Neighborhood Market Opens Hiring Center

The temporary hiring center for the new Walmart Neighborhood Market in the Mercado Center has opened at 1214 Apollo Way in Sunnyvale (near Lawrence). The location was the best available for the time the retailer needed the space.

Walmart will hire about 65 fulltime and part-time employees to work at the market slated to open this spring. Applications are accepted from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and you can also apply online at careers.walmart.com. You can also call 408-773-8439 for more information.

“We are excited to add the first Walmart Neighborhood Market to Santa Clara and bring good jobs with great career opportunities to the area,” says store manager Karina Arvizu.

Walmart continues to honor its Veterans Welcome Home Commitment by offering a job to any qualified veteran who has been honorably discharged within the past 12 months, and meets Walmart’s standard hiring criteria. Find out more at walmartcareerswithamission.com.

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