SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Working with local officials, state Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth, D-Peoria, passed legislation to streamline the process of using tax incentives for businesses, including OSF Health Care, that can take part the Rivers Edge Redevelopment Zone (RERZ) Program.
“The Rivers Edge Redevelopment Zone has helped bring economic development to downtown Peoria that might not have happened otherwise,” Gordon-Booth said. “As more businesses look to move into this area, the state should make some simple changes to encourage even more economic development and job creation.”
“Bringing jobs and economic opportunity to Peoria will always be one of my top priorities,” said Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis. “I want to thank Rep. Gordon-Booth on her continued leadership on this issue. This legislation will help streamline the processes for businesses to take advantage of important economic resources to help Peoria grow.”
In 2011, Gordon-Booth passed legislation that allowed Peoria to be part of one of the communities able to participate in the RERZ Program. Since that time, many projects in the city have tried to use the tax credit to redevelop property, including the Pere Marquette Hotel and the Kickapoo Building. As OSF Saint Francis Medical Center continues its plans to add to redevelopment in the former Caterpillar Headquarters, Gordon-Booth worked with community leaders to find ways to improve how the program works.
Gordon-Booth’s Senate Bill 3527 would help streamline some of the processes to make it easier for companies to use the economic development tools and encourage more investors to come to Peoria. These changes include extending the time frame companies can apply to use the tax credit; allowing companies to submit the audit completed to the federal government to qualify for state tax credits; and permitting companies to carry over the tax credits they earn for a maximum of five years.
“OSF HealthCare is committed to building a stronger and healthier Peoria,” said Joe Savala, Senior Vice President, Facilities and Construction Management for OSF HealthCare. “This legislation, carried by Rep. Gordon-Booth and supported by our entire Peoria delegation, will build upon and improve existing law which will result in even greater redevelopment opportunities for the region. We are appreciative of Rep. Gordon-Booth’s efforts and look forward to continuing to work with her. OSF HealthCare is committed to maximizing the positive impact this project will have and looks forward to hiring individuals and businesses from across Central Illinois, including in our minority communities.”
“I appreciate the commitment that OSF has to improving our community and allowing everyone to participate in this amazing opportunity,” Gordon-Booth said. “Not only do they provide good health care to community residents, but their commitment to being part of a greater economic development plan and hiring people and companies from the minority community shows how much they are invested in the entire region.”