ALTON, Ill. – State Rep. Monica Bristow, D-Alton, recently invited the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Director, Erin Guthrie, to visit the Metro East and learn more about the economic growth and projects happening in the area and ways the state and DCEO can assist to continue to create new jobs.
“When we talk about economic growth in Illinois, it is important that Downstate and the Metro East are not left out of that conversation,” said Bristow. “We are now starting to see new businesses and organizations invest in the Metro East, and I want to make sure that the momentum continues. We still have a lot of work to do, but I am committed to work with DCEO and our area partners to help develop new industries and grow our local economy.”
Guthrie met Bristow and other area legislators, state Rep. Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, and state Sen. Rachelle Crowe, D-Glen Carbon, on Dec. 9 as they visited different parts of the Metro East. Bristow showed Guthrie around downtown Alton and met with the Alton Works team including John and Jayne Simmons to learn about their work to revitalize Alton through public and private partnerships. They later met with community leaders to hear further input about the project and ways the state could help. Later in the day, the legislators and Guthrie toured a WestRock facility outside Edwardsville to learn about the work they do and their role in creating hundreds of full-time and temporary jobs in the Metro East and across the state.
As the former President of the RiverBend Growth Association, Bristow remains committed as state representative to promoting economic growth in the region and downstate revitalization. Bristow recently co-sponsored an economic update with the RiverBend Growth Association for businesses and unions to learn more about upcoming changes that will affect them in 2020 and has sponsored and supported numerous pro-business initiatives and bills at the state level.
“I was proud to show Director Guthrie the new projects and growth that is happening in our area, and I want to thank her for joining us. John and Jayne Simmons and the Alton Works team are working tirelessly to revitalize Alton through public and private partnerships, and we are lucky to have such dedicated people and organizations across our region who are working to make it better,” said Bristow. “I know that it takes a lot of work from local businesses, owners, employees and our many business organizations to be successful, and I’m committed to working with them to see that we can continue to grow and establish new, high-paying jobs throughout the region.”