WALLETHUB, a personal finance website, released a study earlier this past week comparing local economic growth of communities across the country.
Out of 515 U.S. cities, Springfield ranked 507th in local economic growth. Or, looking at it another way, the website determined that the capital city is the ninth-slowest growing city in the country.
The metrics that that determined the findings: population growth, median household income growth, job growth, poverty rate decrease, regional GDP growth, unemployment rate decrease, growth in number of businesses, working-age population growth, foreclosure rate decrease, median household income growth.
[Eric Berglund, the CEO of the Land of Lincoln Economic Development Corp. (LLEDC), the city and county’s new joint economic development arm] said Springfield has been bogged down the past few years by the lack of a state budget, general uncertainty over the state’s larger fiscal situation and population loss among other things. But, he said the region’s affordable cost of living and other fundamental strengths can set it up for future success.
According to the report, Champaign is Illinois’ fastest-growing city, but it ranks an abysmal 343 on the list. Naperville is a few spots back and Chicago ranks 374, just behind Cicero. Yes, you read that right.
Decatur is dead last on the list at 515. Springfield ain’t much higher than that.
Fort Myers, Florida is first.