State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) and State Rep. Brad Halbrook (R-Shelbyville) visited Arthur, Arcola, and Tuscola Wednesday, March 4, talking with business leaders, economic development leaders, and local officials about how Douglas County can use its Enterprise Zone designation as a marketing tool to recruit job creators to the area.
The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Development announced late last year that Douglas County would be certified as an Enterprise Zone starting Jan. 1.
Rose and Halbrook are calling the Enterprise Zone a “game changer” for the region in terms of creating jobs, recruiting new businesses, and boosting local economies.
“The great thing about an Enterprise Zone is that it starts with the premise of helping our incumbent employer,” Rose said. “The best place it to grow and create jobs is with our incumbents, but it also puts us on a pretty good map now for the whole country for people looking to relocate and create new businesses. If you look across at what this county has, we are enormously blessed. You have 57, 36; you have three major natural gas pipelines in North America crisscrossing right here. That doesn’t happen anywhere else in the world, and that is a huge advantage to job creation.”
Rose also noted the benefits of having the University of Illinois and the Decatur’s ADM, Tate and Lyle, and CAT within the region.
“these are tremendous advantages that we are lucky to have already,” Rose added. “Now you put an Enterprise Zone on top of that, and that creates bright, flashing red light on the map of the United States that says Douglas County is open for business and we want your business.”
Rose noted that, naturally, job growth comes from incumbent businesses that add 10-15 jobs over a period of time.
“The nice advantage that comes is when you can put that big fish on a hook to bring new jobs to the community too,” Rose said.
The full story can be found in the Wednesday, April 11 edition of The Tuscola Journal.