Story by 89 WLS Reporter Bill Cameron
(CHICAGO) Governor Pat Quinn’s response to Texas Governor Rick Perry is to say, “We’ve seen this rodeo before!”
The governor’s office calls Perry’s ad campaign “a publicity stunt” that won’t work because companies are choosing Illinois all the time. Quinn says just yesterday the world’s largest maker of water pumps – Grundfos of Denmark – broke ground on a new North American headquarters in Downers Grove.
Quinn claims he’s actually made Illinois friendlier to companies by reducing the state’s discretionary spending to historic lows, cutting red tape for environmental permits, and overhauling workers comp.
And he says when state lawmakers send him pension reform, Illinois will be even more attractive to business.
Complete response from Quinn’s office:
Bill - We've seen this rodeo before. And if previous, similar efforts by other Republican governors are any indication - these publicity stunts don't work and they don't change the fact that businesses are choosing Illinois all the time. In fact, today we announced a global corporation is choosing Illinois for its North American headquarters, in part due to Governor Quinn's Clean Water Initiative and work to make our state a global hub for water technology.
With our strong transportation network, diverse economy, vibrant manufacturing base and skilled workforce, Illinois is one of the best places to do business in the world. And when all state and local taxes are considered, Illinois has the fifth-lowest effective tax rate in the country, at 4.6%, according to a 2011 study by Ernst & Young LLP.
Under Gov. Quinn's leadership, the state has become friendlier to employers. He's done more than any other governor to restore fiscal stability after decades of mismanagement and give businesses the certainty they need to invest. His actions have included reducing the state's discretionary spending to historic lows and cutting red tape for environmental permits. Gov. Quinn successfully overhauled the worker's compensation system to save businesses billions of dollars and reduce insurance rates for Illinois companies by nine percent. And he has made international trade and foreign direct investment efforts a priority, taking several trade missions to help Illinois companies access more global markets and recruit international businesses to our state. Not to mention - Illinois is investing in its transportation system like no other state, with $44 billion in capital construction efforts well underway.
There is no doubt that when lawmakers pass pension reform and send a bill to the governor, Illinois' economy and business climate will be further strengthened. That's why we continue to focus on the hard but necessary reforms to restore fiscal stability to Illinois.
In addition - Spending taxpayer dollars on ads in hopes of poaching companies from Illinois isn't an economic development strategy. (As the New York Times pointed out in its December 2012 article on Texas' incentive practices, despite handing out more business incentives than any other state, Texas has the third-highest proportion of hourly jobs paying at or below minimum wage. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/03/us/winners-and-losers-in-texas.html?_r=0
© Content Copyright 2013 WLS Radio 890AM and WLSAM.com. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.