Intersect Illinois and DCEO create new initiative to help increase economic opportunity

Governor Rauner and Jim Schultz, CEO of Intersect Illinois, announced Thursday on Facebook Live that a statewide coalition of economic development organizations are partnering to establish a comprehensive business expansion and retention program, CORE.

CORE, short for Creating Opportunities for Retention and Expansion, will provide an approach to economic development, identify and remove barriers to business growth, and increase investment in Illinois.

It is comprised of several management committees, which include: Intersect Illinois, the Illinois Department of Commerce, the Illinois Economic Development Association, Ameren, ComEd, Nicor Gas, Great River Economic Development Foundation, Greater Sterling Economic Development Corporation and the Grundy County Economic Development Council.

This new initiative is the state’s first to bring together economic development partners to create a unified business retention and expansion strategy. It will deploy a systematic approach to understanding and identifying statewide trends, enabling state and local stakeholders to better address economic development needs.

“It is essential to understand the needs of the business community in order to promote economic growth in Illinois,” said Jim Schultz, Chairman and CEO of Intersect Illinois. “The CORE Coalition creates a platform to coordinate services for businesses and increase the efficacy of our existing economic development tools. I have made a push for this state to become the Red Carpet state as opposed to the Red-Tape state. This is a significant first step in simplifying the experience for our valuable businesses while garnering insight into how best to serve them going forward.”

The CORE Coalition will host regional coordination events in October where members will receive training on the Synchronist program and strategies for coordinating high quality customer service at the state and local level.