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August 1, 2001

Governor Signs Corporate Headquarters Relocation Act

CHICAGO -- Governor George H. Ryan today signed the Corporate Headquarters Relocation Act, which offers targeted incentives to large companies that relocate their corporate headquarters to Illinois. The legislation was instrumental in helping attract the Boeing Company to Illinois earlier this year.

"The incentives authorized by this legislation helped us compete against Texas and Colorado as we worked to land Boeing in Illinois. In the future, we expect these types of incentives will also help level the playing field for Illinois as it competes with other states for new corporate headquarters," said Ryan.

A major provision of the legislation extends the EDGE tax credit an additional five years for eligible corporations, but limits the credit to 60 percent of the allowable credit. EDGE has already proven to be a highly successful economic development tool during the last two years, helping create 9,400 new jobs and retaining an additional 4,800 jobs.

In addition to extending the life of the EDGE tax credit from 10 to 15 years, the legislation allows eligible companies to apply for up to 50 percent reimbursement for certain relocation costs, such as moving office equipment, and gives local taxing authorities greater flexibility to offer large companies property tax relief.

To be eligible for the incentives offered by the legislation, a company must relocate at least 250 corporate headquarter jobs to Illinois and have annual worldwide revenues of at least $25 billion.

The legislation, initiated by Governor Ryan, received the backing of more than 90 percent of the legislators in the General Assembly.

"Governor Ryan and an overwhelming majority of legislators realize that for Illinois to effectively compete for good paying jobs, we must be aggressive and creative when it comes to bringing new companies to our state. Currently 22 states have either a lower corporate income tax or no corporate income tax. The Corporate Headquarters Relocation Act is another good example of the Governor's leadership in making sure Illinois has a pro-business climate," said DCCA Director Pam McDonough.

John Warner, the senior Boeing executive who led the company's evaluation team, said that cost considerations were factored in to the selection of Chicago as the location of the aerospace company's new world headquarters. "This was an important strategic business decision for Boeing. Our team evaluated many factors, including costs associated with doing business in different places. The package that was offered by Governor Ryan, the Illinois Legislature, and the City of Chicago proved to be a very important factor in building a strong business case for the region as we examined our options, allowing us to consider fully all the other benefits the region has to offer," Warner said.

The EDGE program allows a company to lower its corporate income tax liability based on the amount of new personal income taxes the company's employees will pay.

Independent economic analyses of Boeing's move to Chicago show that when factoring in the other jobs that will be created as the result of the company's headquarters relocation, the overall economic impact to the Illinois economy will be at least $4.3 billion over 20 years.

Senate Bill 1285 was sponsored by Senators James "Pate" Philip, R-Wood Dale; Kirk Dillard, R-Hinsdale; and Representatives Michael Madigan, D-Chicago; Lee Daniels, R-Elmhurst; and Barbara Flynn Currie, D-Chicago.


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