Economic Development Council | WGLT

Economic Development Council

Scaringe speaks
Ryan Denham / WGLT

Bloomington-Normal residents won’t have to wait very long after the LA Auto Show to see Rivian’s first two vehicles firsthand—or to shop for one.

Deanna and Adam
Ryan Denham / WGLT

What’s the average commute time in Bloomington-Normal? How many patents do our entrepreneurs win each year? What’s the median rent for those living in the Twin Cities?

Mary Cullen / WGLT

The House version of a new farm bill would impose tough new work requirements on recipients of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council released its latest quarterly update showing record low unemployment rates and a slight increase in jobs over 2017.

Cindy Le / WGLT

Local officials are scratching their heads about why the state picked a chunk of Illinois State University’s campus as McLean County’s sole tract for a new tax incentive program designed to help low-income areas.

Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council

A new manufacturer is coming to town.

Carleigh Gray / WGLT

UPDATED 12:30 p.m. | The CEO of the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council has resigned to take another position.

An artist rendering looking south at proposed underpass between the Children's Discovery Museum and Uptown Station in Uptown Normal
Farr Associates / Town of Normal

Local leaders are heading to Washington, D.C., next month to lobby for two new community projects.

Two men sit at a table and address the Unit Five School Board. They are Economic Development Council Director Kyle Ham and Rivian Automotive CEO RJ Scaringe
Staff / WGLT

The head of the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council said he hopes to rebuild strained relationships with some elected officials in the Twin Cities.

Mike Miletich / WGLT

The head of the Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council said Rivian Automotive has earned its property tax abatement for the year.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

There are 9,000 fewer workers in Bloomington-Normal than there were seven years ago, according to Economist Mike Doherty of the Illinois Farm Bureau.

Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Brandt Industries will receive $1.2 million in state tax credits to create its first U.S. manufacturing plant and hire at least 300 workers in McLean County, Gov. Bruce Rauner said Friday.

Google Maps

Negotiations over tax incentives to bring a Canada-based Brandt Industries manufacturing plant to McLean County were unusual in that they included the Unit 5 school superintendent and the county board chair at the table, as well as economic development officials.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The McLean County Board voted 16-1 on Tuesday for a proposed deal to bring a Canadian manufacturer to central Illinois in exchange for at least 300 jobs and a plant investment of more than $21 million.

Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Unit 5’s school board on Monday reluctantly approved around $400,000 in property-tax breaks for a Canadian manufacturer in exchange for the promise of hundreds of new local jobs.

Cristian Jaramillo / WGLT

A potential multi-sports complex on Bloomington-Normal's west side could top $50 million in public-private investment.

In an interview  for GLT's Sound Ideas, Katie Kim of the Kim Group, a developer working with landowner Dave Stark on a multi-use sports complex in Bloomington-Normal, said she continues to meet with stakeholders.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The face of retail is changing drastically, but there is still a place for brick and mortar stores. That's according to Rob Karr, the head of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association.

Karr spoke in Normal before the Economic Development Council saying there are parallels with the past in the way technology is changing retail.

Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council

The 11th annual One Voice contingent of McLean County elected officials, business, social service and education leaders is preparing to head to Washington, D.C.

Staff / WGLT

The closure of Macy's in Eastland Mall is a symbol of retail upheaval nationwide according to Bloomington City Council candidates in wards one, five, and seven.

Staff / WGLT

The Town of Normal has fired a broadside at the City of Bloomington over its decision to try to terminate the Metro Zone agreement.

Michael Hill / WGLT

Bloomington Alderman Diana Hauman is breaking with Mayor Tari Renner over the Metro Zone agreement.

Renner supports dissolving the partnership with Normal covering taxes, services, and infrastructure on the west side of town.

Staff / WGLT

The Bloomington and Normal dispute over the Metro Zone agreement on tax revenue and infrastructure sharing is not necessarily a black eye for the community.

That's according to Kyle Ham, the head of the Economic Development Council.

Nelson Pavlovsky / Flickr

As central Illinois leaders try to assess the magnitude of Caterpillar, Incorporated's announcement they are moving top corporate leadership to the Chicago area, there are no sure answers.

Kyle Ham heads the Bloomington Normal Economic Development Council.

Staff / WGLT

Skepticism and opposition surfaced quickly on social media after economic incentives were announced to attract Rivian Automotive to the former Mitsubishi auto manufacturing plant.  The Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council, the Town of Normal, and Mayor Chris Koos helped lead the effort to pass an incentive package which includes property tax abatements from area taxing bodies. 

The Mayor of Normal said twin cities officials checked into negative news reports about Rivian Automotive and there is nothing there.

Koos made the case for proceeding with a million dollar cash grant and five year tax abatement to encourage Rivian to buy the former Mitsubishi plant.

State and Bloomington-Normal Economic Development officials have found a probable buyer for the former Mitsubishi auto plant.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

After a year plus at the helm of State Farm Insurance, CEO Michael Tipsord took his act public in McLean County with a guided q and a at an Economic Development Council dinner. Tipsord repeated what his predecessor, now retired Chairman Ed Rust Junior said often in his closing years.

"The corporate headquarters of State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company will remain in Bloomington-Normal," said Tipsord.

Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

The industrial salvage company that owns the closed Mitsubishi plant in Normal has put off an auction to break up the equipment, building, and furniture.

This is the third delay for the auction originally scheduled for August. The latest date had been the 18th of October.

Creative Commons

The first anniversary of the announcement of the closure of the Mitsubishi Auto plant in Normal is this weekend.

GLT is revisiting the several former workers we've followed since then.

Ralph Weisheit

Bloomington's mayor said a sales tax sharing proposal is "dead, in the short term at least" after a majority of aldermen decided against further discussions. 

However, Mayor Tari Renner said the proposal could resurface after the April 2017 municipal elections.

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