Biz Buzz: Blakeslee bill boosts renewable energy

The state Legislature has passed a bill by Assemblyman Sam Blakeslee, R-San Luis Obispo, that is intended to attract renewable energy projects to California.

The bill gives the state the authority to provide tax incentives to projects that produce components of renewable energy and alternative transportation projects in the form of solar panels, wind turbines and alternative fuel vehicles.

The incentives remove a layer of redundant taxation that makes California less competitive than neighboring states, Blakeslee said.

“Layer after layer of bad tax and regulatory policies have made California a job-killing machine,” he said.

The bill passed the Assembly by a vote of 72-0.

To be eligible for the incentives, companies must demonstrate that their projects would foster economic growth and create jobs.

— David Sneed

Longtime insurance firm has new CFO

Longtime local insurance firm Morris and Garritano recently hired Gabe Garcia as its new chief financial officer and promoted Ben Hoover to employee benefits producer.

Garcia, a San Luis Obispo native, has 14 years of experience in public and private sector accounting, including as a chief financial officer for a luxury hotel and resort development project in the Caribbean and as a tax manager at several accounting firms.

He has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Cal Poly and a master’s in business taxation from USC. He has been a member of Kiwanis San Luis Obispo and has served on the Cal Poly Accounting Discipline Advisory Board, the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce Ambassador’s Committee, and the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce Task Force for Affordable Housing.

Central Coast native and Cal Poly graduate Hoover joined the firm in 2009 as a broker. He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration and has worked for Triage Consulting Group, a San Francisco health care consulting firm.

— Julia Hickey