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Special session for Amazon?

Wednesday, Sep 27, 2017

* Dave McKinney interviewed House Republican Leader Jim Durkin this week and he summed up the interview for WBEZ

On what Durkin doesn’t want Amazon to do

McKinney: He doesn’t want to see environmental standards relaxed to suit Amazon. He doesn’t want to see Amazon given permission to fast track any kind of legal disputes to the state supreme court. These were concessions that Wisconsin made to Foxconn. He doesn’t want to do that. … If, for some reason, Amazon doesn’t meet the 50,000 jobs that it’s promising to create, he wants to give Illinois the ability to yank those subsidies. So those are his key points. Here we have one legislative leader, going on record saying what he wants to see contained in an incentive package. […]

What’s next for Illinois before October 19

McKinney: Jim Durkin has said that perhaps here we need to schedule a special session in Springfield prior to the deadline to submit these proposals, which is Oct. 19. Durkin told me that the Foxconn example caused him to sit up and think a little bit about what ought to go into an incentive package that will have to be acted on by Springfield.

Watch for whether or not we get a special session or not. Durkin is going to be pushing for that, or he at least favors it. We would probably know ahead of the 19th what the details of it are. If there is a decision to try and show an act of good faith and get a package passed ahead of that deadline, I think strategically that would be a good move. I think if not, I would expect word of what’s going into these things to begin trickling out after the 19th. Nobody wants to show their hand prior to that.

…Adding… Press release…

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Governor Bruce Rauner today announced the formation of a committee that will support the drive to bring Amazon’s HQ2 to the Chicago area. The committee will be co-chaired by Oscar Munoz, CEO of United Airlines.; Penny Pritzker, Founder and Chair of PSP Capital; Jim Reynolds, Chairman and CEO of Loop Capital; and Miles White, Chairman and CEO of Abbott.

The effort will be headed by the Mayor and Governor, who are serving as Honorary Co-Chairs of the Committee, and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, who is serving as Honorary Vice-Chair. In total, the committee is comprised of more than 600 leaders from across the business, financial, technology, arts and culture, civic and education communities.

“This unprecedented coalition brings together the public and private sectors with education, community and faith leaders to speak with a powerful, unified voice that says that Chicago is the ideal location for Amazon to build its new home and continue to grow for generations,” Mayor Emanuel said. “As we prepare the bid to bring Amazon home to Chicago, this committee will highlight the region’s competitiveness and strength as a national and global leader in business, education, research, culture and quality of life.”

“This Committee’s membership compellingly represents the assets that Illinois offers business,” Governor Rauner said. “These leaders take advantage of our resources in transportation, distribution and logistics; technology and engineering excellence; world renowned medical, academic and educational research; and culture, arts, recreation and sports. Most important, they access Illinois’ diverse, highly skilled workforce. Their involvement sends a great message about the value of doing business in Illinois.”

The full and very long list is here.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

17 Comments
  1. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 9:48 am:

    Good interview. Strong points by Durkin. But can he reliably speak for Rauner, even if he wants to?


  2. - anon2 - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 9:50 am:

    I can’t understand how Chicago could even be in the running, if it really were the Democratic hellhole depicted by the GOP.


  3. - Fudo myoo - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 9:50 am:

    How about we not let the non FOIA for profit entity (they never were granted 501c3 status)
    Know as
    Intersect Illinois
    Negotiate this deal
    We will not have transparency as long as intersect illinois is involved
    We can’t FOIA intersect Illinois as a private corporation
    Let’s also not forget that the
    EDGE program has never had an
    Independent audit
    Ever
    We have no idea if we hit the jobs
    We paid
    Over a billon
    Since EDGE began

    Durkin realizes the damage
    Rauner scams
    Could do to ILGOP


  4. - cdog - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 9:51 am:

    I find it ironic that in order to “play the game,” we have to change the rules of “The Game.”

    There’s a new beast in town, Amazon.

    Glad to hear that Durkin has some thoughtful boundaries.


  5. - Peters Post - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 9:56 am:

    And the snipe hunt can be scheduled the night before.


  6. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:13 am:

    Good work by McKinney, no surprise.

    To Durkin,

    It’s been my belief Durkin could arguably be the most important person under the Dome to get everyone engaged and to get everyone to find a way to pull in one direction on many things, Amazon now included.

    It’s not if Rauner will allow Durkin to speak for him, that’s backwards thinking that doesn’t allow Durkin to help the governor.

    Will Rauner listen and heed what Durkin presents as avenues to win, that’s the better of the two ways.


  7. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:20 am:

    anon2, who said Chicago is in the running? They will make the pitch to Amazon and the company will say if they are in the running or not.


  8. - theCardinal - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    The politics in Illinois and gun violence in chicago should be enough to make them look elsewhere. Throw in the traffic congestion for good measure and a good hard Chi-town winter Odds looking slim unless the incentives (your tax dollars) are so superior to other cities like Indianapolis Atlanta Houston etc…. but Hey we are the number one food destination in the USA right now, so maybe that will have some sway


  9. - Henry Francis - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:40 am:

    I have no idea if Amazon will chose to come here. But if they do, I see Rahm getting championed for bringing them to his great corporate city, and Rauner criticized by giving away too much in tax breaks, etc.


  10. - ;) - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:47 am:

    Yank the subsidies after the fact when they don’t deliver on the promised jobs. No thanks. How about saying that they have to pay them back, or no deal.


  11. - Jibba - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:04 am:

    With global warming, Illinois is starting to look pretty good in winter. Summer might be a beast, but better than the entire south, which will be unbearable soon. 10 months of AC.


  12. - Free Set of Steak Knives - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:21 am:

    You can’t have 600 people negotiating this bill in public or in private.

    If Durkin is speaking for Rauner, let him say so, but last time I checked Chivcago had the lead on this one.


  13. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:30 am:

    Become an Amazon Prime member and have the special session in 2 days, free shipping.


  14. - sulla - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:54 am:

    “Yank the subsidies after the fact when they don’t deliver on the promised jobs. No thanks. How about saying that they have to pay them back, or no deal.”

    Ah, the old “playing hardball with absolutely zero leverage” gambit. Always a popular tactic with armchair economic developers.


  15. - Fudo myoo - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 1:21 pm:

    Frankly Sulla- professional economic developers like you are ones to talk.

    Our economic development has been non existent despite having a “successful businessman ” as Governor.
    Why is that?
    Rauner should have been the start of an economic boom
    Professional excuses in 3,2


  16. - Lucky Pierre - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 4:24 pm:

    Jeff Bezos claims to be a liberal except when he asks for huge incentives from governments for his business

    Highly unlikely he would pick a Red state for his HQ2


  17. - Ron - Thursday, Sep 28, 17 @ 7:35 am:

    Chicago hits virtually every single criteria laid out in the RFP. Don’t blow it.


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