IAR representatives on hand for governor’s economic development announcement

Illinois REALTOR® Pradeep Shukla meets with Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner at an announcement on Feb. 3 about changes to how the state handles economic development.

Illinois REALTOR® Pradeep Shukla meets with Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner at an announcement on Feb. 3 about changes to how the state handles economic development.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, announced the creation of a public-private partnership with a goal of attracting new businesses and jobs to Illinois.

The Governor signed an Executive Order which will create a new economic development entity, called the Illinois Business and Economic Development Corporation. This not-for-profit corporation is charged with recruiting new businesses to Illinois.

On hand for the announcement today were REALTOR® Pradeep Shukla and IAR Government Affairs staff Mike Scobey and Kris Anderson. Shukla, a member of IAR’s Global Task Force and IAR Consulate Liaison for India, said he was pleased to hear the Governor say that the corporation and its Board will work with the consulates of various nations.

The Governor opened up his press conference/announcement this morning by stating “we have been inadequate in selling our state.”

Rauner cited the “anemic job growth” that took place in 2015. He also noted that with the State’s current economic development agency, the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), only 14 percent of the agency’s staff is devoted to business development.

The new corporation, a 501(c)(3), will work within the DCEO, but will be funded with private money.  All recruitment measures worked on and recommended by the corporation will need final approval from DCEO.

“Every year, we’re going to set goals for how many companies we’re recruited, how many jobs we’ve brought from other states and other nations here to Illinois.  We’re going to measure and report on it on a constant basis,” Rauner said.

Rauner answered criticism of this concept that it would lack transparency by saying that the corporation and its Board will be subject to the Freedom of Information Act.

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About Mike Scobey

Mike Scobey is Assistant Director – Advocacy and Local Issues. He supervises and coordinates the IAR Issue Advocacy Program which includes the coordination and management of Issue Advocacy campaigns, inside research, outside research and polling, legal analyses of local government proposals and public relations/education projects. He is responsible for the production of educational and advocacy pieces related to the local government affairs program. He also oversees the local Governmental Affairs Director (GAD) program which includes serving as a liaison to the local GADs and other staff on issue development and prioritization and overall campaign design. He provides staff support to the Commercial/Industrial/Investment Committee.

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