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Moody’s takes a look at Illinois’ future

Tuesday, Mar 1, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller

* From the State of Illinois Forecast Report prepared by Moody’s

Illinois navigated the COVID-19 downturn about as well as the U.S., though a performance gap materialized over the course of the recovery. The labor market has recouped a smaller share of the jobs lost in the recession than nationally, though the disparity stems from the larger-than-average setback in late 2020. Employment growth gained momentum in 2021. Job growth from December 2020 to December 2021 matched the national pace and exceeded the regional pace. The decrease in joblessness has been typical for the U.S. but slightly slower than in the Midwest. Labor market conditions are about as tight as they are nationally judging by metrics such as the unemployment rate, the size of the labor force, the number of job openings, and wage growth.

Stronger-than-expected revenues and federal relief from the American Rescue Plan have put state finances on a firmer footing. The state promptly repayed a loan from the Federal Reserve, is reducing its backlog of unpaid bills, and has a budget surplus. These developments helped Illinois draw upgrades to its credit rating and outlook from multiple ratings agencies.

Though the past 12 months have been stronger than average, full recovery will come more slowly than in the region and the nation. Payrolls are poised to return to their previous peak in the middle of the decade, later than in the rest of the Midwest and U.S., and it will take longer for the unemployment rate to drop to pre-pandemic norms. Tailwinds to the manufacturing base are numerous, but easing of supply-chain bottlenecks is key to the near-term forecast. Prospects are solid for service-providing industries, especially professional/business services and logistics. Leisure/hospitality will also forge ahead as travel picks up, but a slow return of international visitors and less business travel and convention traffic are concerns.

Some existing headwinds will prove exceedingly difficult to overcome. Even as the pandemic loosens its grip on the job market and labor force, persistent out-migration will weigh on the strength of employment gains. Illinois was one of four states or territories that lost residents during the past decade, and additional losses are in store. Fiscal problems continue to plague the state, and Chicago faces the same challenges as many other large cities.

* Long-term outlook: Positive factors

The state will continue to diversify into service-providing industries while nurturing its more efficient and smaller traditional manufacturing core. Chicago will continue to develop as the transportation and distribution center for the Midwest and will increasingly develop its tech industry. The explosion of tech-related hiring on the Near North and West sides and corporate relocations from the suburbs—such as those by Walgreens, Mondelez International, Peapod, Hillshire Brands, Kraft Heinz, and United Continental Holdings—suggest that this economic engine has reached critical mass, enabling its growth to become self-perpetuating.

Professional/business services. Professional/business services will be critical to the economy’s success. Most of the growth in well-paying industries such as professional, scientific and technical consulting will take place in northern Illinois. […]

Financial services. Financial services, which employ 6.9% of the state’s workforce and 7.7% of Chicago’s workforce, compared with 6% nationally, will remain among the state’s core industries. One reason for this is that the outlook for Chicago’s commodities exchanges is promising. They have successfully adapted to new technologies and, through mergers, have increased their market share in the global marketplace. They also hold virtual monopolies over their most important products, thereby benefiting from strong pricing power. Chicago is considered the world capital of futures trading since it is now home to by far the world’s largest derivatives exchange.

An outsize tech industry and legacy ties to financial services make financial technology a promising area of development, but stiff competition from existing fintech hubs limits upside. The insurance industry also has a large footprint on Illinois’ economy, especially in Bloomington, where it makes up 17% of employment, almost nine times the U.S. average. Insurance will remain a reliable source of jobs and income. […]

Tourism. Illinois’ tourism-dependent industries are expected to outperform other parts of the economy over the next decade, but they will be crawling out of an extremely deep hole. […]

* Long-term outlook: Negative factors

Weak demographic trends and deep-rooted fiscal problems such as mounting pension obligations and a shrinking tax base represent the biggest hurdles to the longer-term outlook. The forecast anticipates that the state will grow a step behind the Midwest average and a few steps behind the nation over the extended forecast horizon. Over the next five years, employment in Illinois is forecast to increase 3.9%, below the 4.6% increase for the Midwest and 5.5% rise nationally.

The recovery will proceed much more quickly than the last one, which was hampered by damaged household and business balance sheets and a fragile financial system. However, the economy will emerge somewhat altered, because the pandemic has accelerated the shift toward e-commerce and the consolidation of higher education. The near-term outlook for Illinois closely resembles that for the U.S., but the state will underperform in the long term because of poor population trends and extraordinary pressure on state and local governments.

Manufacturing. Manufacturing will occupy a slightly greaterthan-average share of the Illinois economy, but the state will have to fight to hold on to its manufacturing base. The long-run decline of manufacturing will prevail despite the industry’s short-lived resurgence. Manufacturing is of greater importance in northern and central Illinois than it is in Chicago. While the share of employment in manufacturing in the state, at 9.5%, is only somewhat higher than the national average of 8.5%, the share outside Chicago is higher at 12.7%. Illinois’ largest manufacturing industries, in order of number of jobs in 2021, are food processing, fabricated metals, machinery, chemicals and transportation equipment. Together, these industries account for about 59% of all manufacturing jobs, compared with 53.2% nationally. […]

Higher education. Although higher education has typically been insulated from the whims of the business cycle—and sometimes even been the beneficiary of economic downturns—the COVID-19 pandemic is hitting the sector head-on and thrusting into the spotlight problems that have long been simmering in higher education. Academia faces a looming demand problem not only due to rising costs but also due to changing demographic patterns. Longer-term structural issues in combination with pandemic-related stress will leave some institutions at risk of failure. If and when school failures occur, they are likely to be dominated by those already in poor financial condition due to sagging enrollment, poor student retention, and an overreliance on public funding. […]

Business climate. Illinois, and Chicago in particular, is an ap pealing location to corporate headquarters and companies that need highly skilled workers and are willing to pay for top talent. Despite Illinois’ advantages, however, the state’s financial problems threaten to discourage firms from locating to or remaining in the state. The state’s outlook is tarnished primarily by its bud get woes and weak population trends, not its high costs relative to nearby states. Firms in Illinois tend to pay more in taxes compared with those in neighboring states and labor is on the expensive side, but overall business costs are no higher than the national average. Illinois is gradually increasing its minimum wage, but dozens of other states and local governments are raising their wage floors as well. […]

Unions. Unit labor costs in the state are above the national average, in part because of a still-high presence of unions. The state’s unit labor costs are significantly higher than those of neighboring Indiana but lower than in Michigan and Wisconsin, three states that have adopted right-to-work laws. Under right-to-work laws, employees in unionized workplaces cannot be forced to pay union fees or join unions. Michigan passed a law after a number of businesses, mostly in manufacturing, cited the law as a factor in their decision to locate in Indiana. Less clear are the effects that right-to-work laws have on economic growth. The lack of clarity is mainly due to the fact that union strength is just one factor businesses look at when deciding whether to set up shop or relocate. Energy and other costs also matter, as do a slew of other factors including talent, infrastructure, and access to customers and capital that make it extremely difficult to gauge the precise effects of right-to-work laws on job creation and a state’s economic prosperity.

* Income

Personal income has been slower to rise in Illinois than na tionally, a trend that will extend through the new business cycle. Consumption depends mostly on the state’s income from labor, predominantly wages and salaries, which has lagged the U.S. and regional averages. Total personal income increased 3.6% per year on average over the course of the expansion that ended in 2019, less than the 3.7% regional average and 4.3% national average. Growth in the most important source of income, wages and salaries, averaged 3.3% per year over the 10-year period, versus 3.5% in the Midwest and 4.2% in the U.S.

* Population

The end of the pandemic will not resolve Illinois’ demographic woes. Population decline over the next few years will be the one of the worst among the states, and the deterioration in the workingage population will remain more severe than in other parts of the country. Fewer young adults will make it harder to fill jobs and keep consumer and housing demand afloat. The shrinking tax base will also aggravate state and local fiscal strain. Even as pandemic-related barriers to labor force participation diminish, persistent outmigration and increased remote work will weigh on the strength of employment gains.

* Recent Performance

Illinois navigated the COVID-19 downturn about as well as the U.S., though a performance gap materialized over the course of the recovery. The labor market has recouped a smaller share of the jobs lost in the recession than nationally, though the disparity stems from the larger-than-average setback in November and December of 2020. Employment growth gained momentum in 2021. Job growth from December 2020 to December 2021 was 4.7%, more than the regional pace of 3.7% and a bit higher than the national pace of 4.5%. At the end of the year, employment was 3.8% lower than in December 2019, versus 3.1% lower in the Midwest and 1.95% nationally.

The decrease in joblessness has been typical for the U.S. but slightly slower than in the Midwest. The unemployment rate at the end of the year was 5.3%, higher than the 4% regional average and 3.9% national average, but not as high as in many other large states. Jobless rates are generally lower outside of Chicago, but so is labor force growth. The state’s labor market conditions are about as tight as they are nationally judging by metrics such as the unemployment rate, the size of the labor force, the number of job openings, and wage growth.

Labor force participation has been volatile for the past two years, but it generally rose in 2021. The Illinois rate was 63.4% as of December, compared with the Midwest rate of 63.5% and the U.S. rate of 61.9%, and averaged 63% for the year, just slightly below the Midwest rate of 64% and above the U.S. rate of 61%. The labor force ended the year about 1.8% smaller than in the last month of 2019. That contraction was between the Midwest’s 2.2% gap and the nation’s 1.4% gap.

Inflation and wage pressures are in line with those at the U.S. level, though there is some variation across economies. Supplychain stresses are having the biggest impact in areas with a high concentration of manufacturing, exports or both, which helps explain why the consumer price index has risen more in factory centers such as Peoria than they have in the Chicago area. The Employment Cost Index for Chicago suggests that wages are rising at a pace similar to that nationally.

Most major industries are strengthening, and industries that started with strong recoveries such as transportation/warehousing have generally extended their leads. Green shoots are appearing in office-using industries such as professional/business services, which had been sluggish for most of the recovery. The leisure/hospitality industry has benefited meaningfully from the distribution and wide acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccines in 2021: Employment in this industry is coming off an extremely depressed base, but job creation has gained significant momentum. Employment in some other parts of the economy, including manufacturing and government, is moving in the right direction at a tepid pace.

* Bloomington

Bloomington’s recovery will be tepid. The outlook is tightly tethered to sluggish state government and financial services employment. Weak enrollment trends at Illinois State University will weigh on tuition revenue and limit the need for more faculty and staff. Financial services will remain a stable yet sluggish source of relatively high wage jobs, but a meaningful increase in finance jobs will not materialize in the near term. Rivian’s EV factory offers a glimmer of hope to an otherwise lackluster outlook. The manufacturer recently went public with one of the largest IPOs in years. The surge in production and hiring at the plant will have positive effects on downstream industries such as transportation/warehousing and business/professional services, as well as consumer-dependent industries. Growth will rise above our baseline if Rivian’s success and international attention draw other large investment projects to Bloomington.

* Champaign area

Strength at the University of Illinois’ flagship campus will be a major advantage for Urbana-Champaign’s economy. The Illinois Board of Higher Education approved a fiscal 2023 budget, which calls for a 7% funding increase for the state’s higher education system, including 4% more for the University of Illinois system. It still requires approval by the General Assembly and Governor J.B. Pritzker. One of UofI’s priorities is faculty hiring and retention to keep up with the growing student body. If the request for UofI is granted, the larger budget will lend upside to our forecast for a slowdown in state government employment gains.

* Springfield

Springfield’s lack of dynamic drivers will keep it from picking up much momentum. The state government will have some breathing room over the next few years. However, this temporary cushion will not translate into hiring or solve Illinois’ deeper structural issues. Longer-term fiscal challenges such as massive unfunded pension liabilities will continue to put pressure on the budget and on job growth in Springfield. Healthcare will provide the best avenue for growth because of the continued graying of the population. Providers’ struggle to fill open positions as well as the contraction of the overall population will keep the industry a step behind the national average.

* Greg Hinz

Overall business costs in the state are slightly lower than in the country as a whole, with energy costs a bright spot. The overall tax burden is relatively high, but not extraordinarily so, with Illinois getting an index rating of 104 with the nation as a whole 100.

At least one of the core problems facing Illinois is that with a declining population, the state has a smaller tax base to pay off old pension debt, the report says.

The bottom line of the report, prepared for the Illinois Commission on Government Forecasting & Accountability: “Illinois has what it takes to remain a top business center, so long as it can solve the fiscal problems that are eroding its edge in the competition for talent, jobs and capital.”

       

37 Comments
  1. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:36 am:

    == The explosion of tech-related hiring on the Near North and West sides and corporate relocations from the suburbs—such as those by Walgreens, Mondelez International, Peapod, Hillshire Brands, Kraft Heinz, and United Continental Holdings—suggest that this economic engine has reached critical mass, enabling its growth to become self-perpetuating.==

    Chicago is an uninhabitable hellscape that is also attracting enough new and old businesses to become a self-perpetuating economic engine.

    Make it make sense.


  2. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:43 am:

    ===Make it make sense. ===

    lol


  3. - Hahaha - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:43 am:

    To summarize: Illinois did worse economically than the nation during covid, and will recover slower than the nation after covid. Democratic leadership for you.


  4. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:44 am:

    As Paul Harvey used to say now you know the rest of the story

    Right to work for less is hog wash

    The state’s unit labor costs are significantly higher than those of neighboring Indiana but lower than in Michigan and Wisconsin, three states that have adopted right-to-work laws. Under right-to-work laws, employees in unionized workplaces cannot be forced to pay union fees or join unions. Michigan passed a law after a number of businesses, mostly in manufacturing, cited the law as a factor in their decision to locate in Indiana


  5. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:45 am:

    ===Democratic leadership for you.===

    Rating increases, firsts in 20 years…

    “Democratic leadership for you.”


  6. - Donnie Elgin - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:47 am:

    =Springfield’s lack of dynamic drivers will keep it from picking up much momentum=

    Pity poor Springfield, the only thing the city has going for it is the aging population that will be good for healthcare.


  7. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:48 am:

    ===Right to work for less is hog wash===

    Organized Labor versus the Rauner-ing of Illinois, voters rejected this.

    Foreign business investments in Chicagoland again lead the nation, making Illinois a place to invest for business.

    Are all those investment folks… wrong?


  8. - Hahaha - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:55 am:

    “Rating increases”

    Easy to do when the Federal government is pumping billions into our state to help our bottom line - as the report states.


  9. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:57 am:

    ===Easy to do when…===

    I know you lack reading comprehension when it came to the why the ratings increased, because it doesn’t agree with your ridiculous ideas of “management”.

    Good try. No.


  10. - the Edge - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:57 am:

    Illinois usually recovers slower than surrounding states because of its large amount of service (tourism) industry compared to the rest of the midwest.


  11. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 10:58 am:

    Putting unions in the negative column after highlighting our economic strength really says something about Moody’s, and it’s not good. This very report contradicts its position:

    “Job growth from December 2020 to December 2021 matched the national pace and exceeded the regional pace”

    Also that we have a budget surplus, more revenue than expected and are paying debt.


  12. - Big Jer - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:04 am:

    I have always found it interesting that places like Moodys never consider climate change or natural resources in their reports. It’s like they’re incapable of looking at the whole picture.

    Illinois and especially the Chicago area have a lot going for it when climate change and natural resources are factored in. a fresh water source. The middle of the country i.e. not directly affected by sea level rise. The northern part of Illinois will not be as affected by heat and drought as the west and south will be.

    Unfortunately humans are poor at thinking long term and so everyone is moving to the southern states and especially the southwest states. Other than living in Chicago because of it’s fresh water source, if I was in my 20’s and had the means to do so I would move to Canada or a Northern European city. Somewhere that in 40yrs was still predicted to have moderate rainfall and not unbearable heat.

    Sorry Moody’s. When looking at the whole picture and not just business, finance, etc., I see Illinois with a more positive future than other parts of the U.S.


  13. - RNUG - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:14 am:

    Illinois has always lagged going into and coming out of recessions. Partly has to do with durable goods manufacturing being a bit larger portion of the mix.

    What I read was business more or less as usual, and a bit better fiscal outlook than (the last 40 years of) normal as long as the State keeps up the pension fund payments.


  14. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:16 am:

    ==Right to work for less is hog wash

    The state’s unit labor costs are significantly higher==

    So which is it?

    We’ll say this loudly for the people in the back: RTWFL is only cheaper because it cuts people’s pay. That’s what you’re asking for, for people to take a paycut. Good luck selling it.


  15. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:20 am:

    LP:

    Did you not read the rest of the paragraph? As per usual you pick and choose what you want to see. Dishonesty is your thing. If you had bothered to continue reading you would have seen this: “Less clear are the effects that right-to-work laws have on economic growth. The lack of clarity is mainly due to the fact that union strength is just one factor businesses look at when deciding whether to set up shop or relocate. ”

    So, contrary to your union hating instincts, right to work isn’t the end all be all you are attempting to portray it to be. Again, you’re dishonest.


  16. - Blue to the Bone - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:21 am:

    I was going to mention climate change but kudos to Big Jer for beating me to the punch.

    Why don’t these reports take these issues into consideration? You’d think that this would be a major factor when putting together a financial outlook for any sort of business or municipality or whatever.

    If things pan out like the experts are predicting (and it looks like they’re spot on if you filter out all the disinformation), then it’s easy to see population numbers in Illinois and other upper Midwestern states increasing in another ten or twenty years.

    As I watch all the growth in the west loop, especially with some big name companies making the move to Chicago, I’m guessing that climate change is a big factor in their decision. Who is going to be able to thrive anywhere west of the Rockies with the consistent wildfires and who is going to be able to survive anywhere close to the coasts if there is a significant rise in sea level over and above what can be handled by our current infrastructure?


  17. - someonehastosayit - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:28 am:

    So Illinois gets dinged for not having a wage increase rate as high as other states but also gets dinged for having higher labor costs than other states? It seems that Illinois workers generally making more money than the surrounding states is something to be celebrated. And it would seem that the other states are trying to catch up. Maybe I’m missing something.


  18. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:34 am:

    ==It seems that Illinois workers generally making more money than the surrounding states is something to be celebrated.==

    Depends on who you are. For the workers, yes, it’s great. For the corporations, it sucks because it’s that much less than can pump into the CEO’s golden parachute.

    Me, I’m on the workers’ side (I *am* a worker, lol). And I think my state should be, too.

    But if somebody like LP wants to run on a “you should take a paycut so that the people who own your company get richer” platform, he can have at it.


  19. - Scurvydog - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:41 am:

    ==Firms in Illinois tend to pay more in taxes compared with those in neighboring states and labor is on the expensive side, but overall business costs are no higher than the national average.

    This was interesting. You wouldn’t know it from talking to my “grass is always greener” friends who are business owners.


  20. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:42 am:

    ==You wouldn’t know it from talking to my “grass is always greener” friends who are business owners. ==

    Some costs are more visible than others.


  21. - Chicago Blue - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 11:43 am:

    Looking through the details, two things stuck out for me. 1) The analyst basically dismissed the official 2020 census #s showing that IL & Chicago weren’t shrinking as fast as the annual estimates and went right back to parroting the annual estimates as gospel. Population trends change and climate change and access to fresh water will certainly impact where people move over the next 10 years and beyond. 2) IL’s racial and ethnic demographics mirror the country to an incredibly high degree. We’re within 1.5% percentage points of the national average on white, black, hispanic and asian populations. We are what America is and that should be celebrated, not attacked by those with a economic and criminal justice agenda.


  22. - Annonin' - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 12:26 pm:

    Wonder what the over/under will be on when Moody’s recognizes that IL’s decision to respect residents personal freedoms has a impact on workers? 5 years? Guess it mostly depends on the Supreme Court master minds


  23. - Jibba - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 12:37 pm:

    ===union strength is just one factor businesses look at when deciding whether to set up shop or relocate. Energy and other costs also matter, as do a slew of other factors including talent, infrastructure, and access to customers and capital that make it extremely difficult to gauge the precise effects of right-to-work laws===

    Repeat ad nauseam


  24. - City Zen - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 12:38 pm:

    “with a declining population, the state has a smaller tax base to pay off old pension debt”

    Lookin’ at you, retirees.


  25. - thisjustinagain - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 1:19 pm:

    To City Zen at 12:38pm.
    Funny, I’m looking to the rich to finally pay their way, instead of on the backs of workers.


  26. - Chicago 20 - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 1:53 pm:

    - “Less clear are the effects that right-to-work laws have on economic growth”

    Right to work laws and their effects on economic growth have been studied.

    “These findings echo previous research on RTW laws. Economic studies consistently show that RTW reduces worker earnings by 2-4%. By reducing unionization, RTW has contributed to income redistribution from middle- class workers to the wealthy, boosting the incomes of owners by 2% with little “trickle-down” to the non- unionized workforce. RTW laws have likely contributed to the shrinking middle class in the Midwest.
    Lawmakers should consider these research findings when debating the merits of “right-to-work” in Illinois.”
    Full Report:
    https://illinoisepi.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/pmcr-ilepi-rtw-in-the-midwest-2010-to-2016.pdf


  27. - Nick - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 2:37 pm:

    “Among metro areas, Urbana-Champaign’s economy is the
    strongest in Illinois and one of the best-performing in the region.”

    Well, that’s always nice to hear.


  28. - City Zen - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 3:02 pm:

    ==Right to work laws and their effects on economic growth have been studied.==

    By someone other than a union-funded think tank?


  29. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 3:28 pm:

    So when are Griffin candidates and other Republicans coming out against the union rights amendment? One might think at least one of the major GOP gubernatorial candidates would or should embrace unions. Sen. McCann did, and beat Rauner’s candidate in the primary.


  30. - Nick - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 3:32 pm:

    I’m actually ‘mildly’ suspect of some of their population analysis.

    I don’t think anyone is going to deny that the demographic trends in the state are somehow good. We are either at best treading water or losing people. But, at least on the face of it, it feels like they’re basing their numbers on the American Community Survey which seemed to say Illinois was losing like 100K people each year or something, only for the census to say between 2010-2020 it.. wasn’t nearly that many, let alone close to what would have been culminative.


  31. - Nick - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 3:33 pm:

    I don’t think anyone is going to say* that demographic trends in the state are somehow good.

    Bleh typos.


  32. - Chicago 20 - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 4:37 pm:

    City Zen -

    Is the University of Maine a “union-funded think tank”?

    https://umaine.edu/ble/wp-content/uploads/sites/181/2011/04/RighttoWork_Laws.pdf


  33. - JustaThought - Tuesday, Mar 1, 22 @ 8:21 pm:

    City Zen -

    The report is with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As is this more recent one, which found that Illinois workers have higher wages, are more productive and are less likely to be in poverty than states with “right-to-work” laws. Do you have a critique of the data analysis or just a weak ad hominem about it being “union-funded?”

    https://illinoisepi.files.wordpress.com/2021/03/ilepi-pmcr-protecting-workers-rights-illinois-final.pdf


  34. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Wednesday, Mar 2, 22 @ 7:55 am:

    ==Springfield’s lack of dynamic drivers will keep it from picking up much momentum. ==

    Note to Emperor Langfelder and the Dukes and Duchesses on the City Council: Stop getting all excited about the latest restaurant, dollar store, sports complex, and other things that only employ a few people and call that “economic development.” And instead get serious about seeking tech companies with at least 6-8 figure salaries, factories, and maybe even freight warehouses employing hundreds if not thousands of people to come to Springfield. There’s some land available for this by Scheels and on the south side of the 72 and Macarthur exit.

    Or if those companies don’t want to come to Springfield, then Chatham will be happy to have them.


  35. - Chicagonk - Wednesday, Mar 2, 22 @ 8:42 am:

    Reversing migration trends will be difficult, but not impossible. Improving the efficiency of public services goes a long way - In Chicago , simple things like cleaning up CTA cars and cracking down on gun violence would help.


  36. - City Zen - Wednesday, Mar 2, 22 @ 9:17 am:

    ==The report is with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign==

    So it is your contention there is zero connection between IEPI and UIUC? Because the report states the opposite on the very first page. Or that the Project for Middle Class Renewal identified in the report and the School of Labor and Employment Relations at UIUC are not affiliated at all nor have received any amount of funding from organized labor? If that’s what you think, I’ve got mad news for you.

    I could link to the Heritage Foundation, or any other number of similar reports from the business-side defending right to work with their own data. I’m sure both sides have valid arguments. But presenting one report as the end-all be-all regarding the subject, as it was in this post, is disingenuous.


  37. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Mar 2, 22 @ 9:20 am:

    - City Zen -

    Rich has a post this morning to address your straw men.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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