"There is no better social program than a good job," said Governor Quinn. "My plan is about creating better jobs for more people throughout Illinois. It's about our communities and companies. It's a blueprint for keeping families in their homes and students in college, protecting our seniors and veterans, and helping those left behind to get back on track. It's a plan of action that can deliver immediate results and prepare us for a brighter future."
Among the major points addressed in Governor Quinn's presentation:
- Providing EDGE Tax Credits to State's Auto Industry. Today, Governor Quinn signed into law the Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) tax credit for the State's hard-hit automotive industry. This legislation proposed by the Governor and passed by the General Assembly enables the auto industry, which is among Illinois' largest employers, to retain employee income tax withholdings as an alternative to current EDGE corporate tax credit.
- Increasing Access to Start-up Capital. Small business and incubator companies play a critical role in job creation, worker development and economic growth. Governor Quinn's plan to bolster such efforts includes: creating Angel Investment Tax Credits; expanding the Venture Capital funding for seed and early-stage firms; expanding the State's Entrepreneur in Residence program; and authorizing more new small business loan guarantees.
- Expanding Job Training Programs. Jobs follow brain power. Operation Employ Veterans is a statewide initiative that will help servicemen and servicewomen transition into civilian life by providing employment training and contact with potential employers. The Illinois Community College Sustainability Network (ICCSN) will provide job training in a variety of green workforce areas, such as wind turbines, alternative fuel vehicles and industrial energy efficiency.
- Investing in the Green Economy. Continuing to work to ensure that all Illinois residents have access to clean, safe drinking water, Governor Quinn has made a commitment to updating and replacing aging drinking water and wastewater infrastructure systems, as well assisting unsewered and low-income communities. Illinois is now providing financial and technical assistance to new and expanding green manufacturers to retool their existing structure to meet the needs of the growing green economy, ensuring businesses stay in Illinois and jobs are retained. Governor Quinn also supports the Illinois Power Agency's efforts to facilitate the first long-term, renewable energy contracts in Illinois for ComEd and Ameren, which would encourage more investment, create jobs and help meet the escalating state mandate to buy more renewable energy.
In his address, Governor Quinn also outlined the progress his Administration is making in creating and saving jobs throughout Illinois. A major cornerstone of Governor Quinn's jobs plan is Illinois Jobs Now!,
which the governor signed into law this summer.
Illinois Jobs Now! is the State's first major capital construction program in over a decade and will create and support 439,000 jobs in over six years. Moreover, it will improve the quality of life within our State by constructing or rebuilding schools and roads; strengthening mass transit; launching high-speed rail; and investing in more affordable housing. Illinois Jobs Now! also includes hundreds of millions of dollars for energy efficiency, including weatherization and greening Illinois schools.
In addition, Governor Quinn is working to maximize the federal stimulus funds and jobs that Illinois receives. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) in Illinois has created or retained 18,777 direct jobs, according to ARRA's most recent report on September 30.
The Quinn Administration has assisted in putting together more than 40 business investment packages in 2009, which have led to companies expanding and creating and retaining jobs in Illinois. In total, these projects will create about 2,700 jobs, retain 3,500 jobs and leverage nearly $500 million in private investment.
For more information and a copy of "Illinois Economic Recovery Plan: Jobs for Today and Tomorrow", please visit: Illinois.gov/gov.