* Jacksonville Journal-Courier…
Marquis Energy has “shelved” plans for an ethanol plant in Scott County, the company announced Monday.
Citing state legislation and U.S. trade policy, the Hennepin-based company said it would let more than 800 acres in two-year land options in Scott County expire at the end of April. The plans are being canceled indefinitely, according to spokeswoman Danielle Anderson.
The company had plans to develop a $500 million ethanol plant — to be built near Bluffs, about 60 miles west of Springfield, by 2020. […]
Trade tariffs also were a factor in the decision. According to the company, tariffs have restricted international export markets for ethanol and distilled grains.
“These tariffs caused a reduction in corn value, leading to lower prices for U.S. farmers and adding to an already distressed agricultural economy,” Marquis said.
* From the company’s CEO…
“Illinois government’s anti-business and high tax policies will require us to pursue company expansions in surrounding states. [Senate] bill SB 1407 is an example of legislation that will negatively impact our company’s expansion plans — removing our company’s choice in construction contractors we hire and the agreed upon price between the two parties, reducing competition and inflating costs.”
We’ve talked about SB1407 before. It’s got employer groups up in arms, particularly the manufacturers and the Black Caucus has some reservations as well because of the bill’s strong support by the trade unions. Its passage is not assured, so making a major business decision based on a bill that hasn’t even been voted on yet in the originating chamber is a bit… odd.
* From the Illinois News Network…
Associated Builders and Contractors of Illinois President Alicia Martin said Senate Bill 1407 could be a slippery slope.
“The one component that we feel is very egregious is the fact that prevailing wages will be required on private work in these refineries and then where would the overreach come next,” Martin said.
Supporters of the legislation have told lawmakers in committee that the measure is about ensuring safety at refineries, and prevailing wage jobs are the safest jobs. […]
State Rep. C.D. Davidsmeyer, R-Jacksonville, said if Illinois lawmakers could just get out of the way of businesses, Illinois’ economy could grow.
“If [majority Democrats] would stop doing political favors for their largest political donors I think that we could actually have an economy that thrives and we wouldn’t have to be talking about tax increases or fee increases or any of those things and we could just grow naturally,” Davidsmeyer said.