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Revised Illinois Enterprise Zone program planned

Published: Friday, Oct. 26, 2012 2:28 p.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, Oct. 26, 2012 3:18 p.m. CDT

PERU — The North Central Illinois Council of Government’s (NCICG) annual member meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 15 in the city of Peru’s Ron Wren Community Room. The meeting will feature John Thompson, discussing the revised Illinois Enterprise Zone Incentive Program. Thompson will be joined by Ben Wilson, NCICG community development director, in a question and answer session with meeting participants.

Thompson is the president/CEO of the Dixon Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry along with his position as zone administrator of the Lee County Enterprise Zone No. 9 comprising portions of Lee and Ogle counties. Thompson has helped lead statewide efforts to extend the life of the Illinois Enterprise Zone Incentive Program by an additional 25 years.

“With the new legislation taking effect in early August of this year, there are still many questions concerning how the law will affect existing and potential new zones,” said Nora Fesco, NCICG director. “There are six existing Enterprise Zones in the NCICG region covering 27 units of local government. We are anticipating lively discussion on the topic.”

The 2012 Enterprise Zone Extension Legislation makes major changes in the way zones are selected, managed and reported. While the end goal of the possibility of a long-term extension was achieved; the implementation of the program modifications will change the way administrators operate the program at the local level, the way companies report activity in each zone, and the way the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and the Department of Revenue gather and evaluate information.

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