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News and Updates


The Economic Alliance works dilligently to report in a timely manner on things like local business expansion, new business development, new and enhanced development incentives, economic news and other items of interest to our community investors and investor prospects.

Sign up for our e-newsletter today to receive the Economic Alliance's quarterly reports. For more regular updates, connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn and follow our news feed.


NEWS FEED
Monday, June 12, 2017
Kankakee County Joins Illinois Delegation at SelectUSA Summit in Washington, D.C.
For the first time, Kankakee County will be represented at the premier U.S. foreign direct investment summit SelectUSA in Washington, D.C. Hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration from June 18 to 20, the event is expected to draw more than 2,600 attendees and 1,100 vetted global investors.
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Tuesday, May 09, 2017
WorkKankakee.org Relaunches with Improved Navigation, Content
With steady corporate expansion, Kankakee County consistently led Illinois metropolitan areas in associated job growth in the first quarter of this year. Among small Illinois metros, the community has led three of the past four years in job as well as technology growth, according to Milken Institute. To better connect the Greater Chicago region with the wealth of employment and training opportunities throughout Kankakee County, the community has relaunched WorkKankakee.org with improved content and navigation for students, parents and educators as well as current job seekers. 
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Thursday, April 27, 2017
IKO Industries Kankakee Announces Expansion, New Hires
IKO Industries Kankakee is expanding as the groundwork for a 15,000 square foot addition has begun. The space will accommodate a new production line, requiring the hire of 10 to 15 new employees.
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Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Nucor Buys Bourbonnais Alabama Metal Plant, Rehires 65

Nucor Corporation has purchased the Alabama Metal Industries plant in Bourbonnais and hired back between 65 and 70 of the employees who were slated to be laid off.

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Thursday, February 23, 2017
Plochman’s Partners with U of I Engineering for Iconic Squeeze Bottle R&D
As the company celebrates 165 years of mustard making – and 20 years at its Manteno, Illinois, headquarters – Plochman’s Mustard is investing in the future through the collaboration of education and industry. This spring, Plochman’s is joining with a team University of Illinois Engineering students to analyze the design, process and distribution of their products. The project is focused on packaging optimization of the company’s iconic barrel-shaped yellow mustard bottle.
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Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Kankakee County Positioned in Top 10 Nationally for Millennial Growth
A report issued January 23 by leading location advisory, economic incentive and corporate real estate services firm Site Selection Group places the Kankakee Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) – which shares boundaries with Kankakee County – among the nation’s top 10 metros positioned for growth of the millennial demographic. Using data provided by Claritas, Dallas-based SSG’s “The Best Metro Areas for a Talent Pipeline” forecasts that the Kankakee MSA will experience 6.1% growth of the millennial population – classified by the firm as the post-college population under 35 – from 2016 to 2021.
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Monday, January 23, 2017
Food Innovator FutureCeuticals Expands Momence, Illinois, Headquarters
Leading food innovator FutureCeuticals Inc. announced last week a $2 million, 14,700 square foot expansion of its headquarters operation in the Greater Chicago community of Momence, Illinois. According to the company, which holds more than 50 patents for functional food ingredients, the additional space will house its 50 to 60 member sales, customer service and marketing force. Another 20 to 30 employees are expected to be hired within the next 12 to 24 months.
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Tuesday, January 10, 2017
2016 Major Projects Yield More Than $120M in Capital Investment
In terms of growth in the local industrial, institutional, military, utility, multifamily residential, infrastructure and commercial markets, 2016 projects announcements in Kankakee County in 2016 are projected to yield $120,700,000 in capital investment, 699,290 square feel of new space and 904 new jobs.
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Thursday, December 15, 2016
High-tech Growth Drives Kankakee MSA to #1 Position Again in Milken Institute’s Best-performing Cities Index
Outstanding high-technology growth by local companies like multinational bioscience leader CSL Behring and Riverside Healthcare has helped to place the Kankakee Metropolitan Statistical Area – which shares boundaries with Kankakee County – at the top among small metros in the state of Illinois again in 2016. Kankakee MSA’s overall ranking also jumped from 90 to 74 from 2015 to 2016 when compared against 201 small metros nationwide.
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Wednesday, November 16, 2016
NEXT50 to Showcase Manufacturing and Logistics Jobs
NEXT50 Open House and Expo is happening Dec. 2 from 4-7p.m. at Kankakee Community College’s Manufacturing and Industrial Technology Center. It’s free and open to the public. High school students, parents, teachers and guidance counselors are highly encouraged to attend. Refreshments will be served, including Johnsonville brats. 
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Tuesday, November 01, 2016
THRIVE Technology Edition Released
The 2016-17 Technology Edition of THRIVE magazine has been released by the Daily Journal, in partnership with the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County. 
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Thursday, October 27, 2016
Aqua America Consolidates Call Center Operations in Kankakee, Illinois
National water and wastewater provider Aqua America has consolidated call center operations in the Greater Chicago community of Kankakee, Illinois. In September, the utility completed an expansion at the Downtown Kankakee Clock Tower Centre that doubled its space as well as local employment. This site has assumed the operations previously conducted at a now-vacated Pittsburgh call center.
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Tuesday, October 18, 2016
2016-17 Kankakee County Top Industries FTE Report Shows Continued Job Growth
Updated full-time employee counts for Kankakee County’s top 60 manufacturers, logistics firms and institutions were released today by the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County. The Alliance has been tracking FTE count since 2010, reporting annually for local and prospective industrial and commercial developers. “The employee numbers that we track represent 15,641 jobs, which is approximately 30 percent of our county’s total employment as of August 2016,” explained Alliance President and CEO Tim Nugent. “Preliminarily, we are showing year-over-year growth of 200 jobs. This is fairly consistent with the most recent Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) employment report, which indicated year-over-year growth of 500 jobs for Kankakee County.”
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Monday, October 03, 2016
Labor Shed Analysis RFP Issued
The Grundy Livingston Kankakee Workforce Board is soliciting proposals from organizations interested in providing professional services to conduct a Labor Shed Analysis for Grundy, Livingston and Kankakee Counties, which comprise Local Workforce Area #11 under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. The Workforce Board anticipates awarding the contract at its December 20, 2016, meeting. Applicants must be prepared to deploy services immediately following the award of a contract/grant with final product to be presented at the March 21, 2017, Workforce Board meeting.
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Monday, September 26, 2016
Namdar Purchases Northfield Square Mall for $9.6M, Begins Repositioning
In July, Bradley’s Northfield Square Mall was sold to Namdar Realty Group for $9.6M. The privately held Great Neck, NY, real estate investment firm purchased the 527,000 SF shopping complex from C.W. Capital, Bethesda, MD. Spinoso Real Estate Group, North Syracuse, NY, formerly managed the property. Namdar reportedly will actively manage the Illinois Route 50 property with an eye toward significant repositioning. 
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Monday, September 19, 2016
Meijer Breaks Ground in Bradley
Meijer, which operates 230 supercenters and grocery stores in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin, has broken ground on its expansion in Bradley, Illinois. Part of the company’s plan to invest more than $400 million in nine new and 32 remodeled stores across the Midwest this year, the Grand Rapids, Michigan-based retailer is replacing the former Kmart Super Center site at 990 N. Kinzie Ave., starting with the special use-granted conversion of an adjacent commercial parcel with a vacated Taco Bell restaurant into a six-pump, 250,000SF gas station.
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Thursday, September 15, 2016
Kankakee County Exports Up 74%, 16th Highest Growth in U.S.
According to the recently released 2015 Metropolitan Area Export Overview, authored by the International Trade Administration, Kankakee County experienced a 74 percent increase in its world exports from 2014 to 2015. The year-over-year increase from $753M to $1.3B was the 16th greatest bump among metropolitan statistical areas nationwide. The bulk of the growth can be attributed to chemical manufacturing output, specifically products made here by Sun Chemical and Dow Chemical.
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Monday, August 22, 2016
Talent Attraction in Kankakee County Ranks in Nation’s Top 10%
Among 3,141 counties nationwide, Kankakee County is ranked 307 in attracting and developing skilled labor, with 2011-15 skilled job growth of 8%, according to Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI)’s newly released Talent Attraction Scorecard.
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Friday, August 05, 2016
Grundy Livingston Kankakee Workforce Board Secures $500,000 Illinois Talent Pipeline Grant for CSL Behring
The Grundy Livingston Kankakee Workforce Board has sought and received a $500,000 Illinois Talent Pipeline Grant to provide on-the-job training for local dislocated workers in the process of securing new positions at CSL Behring Kankakee. The funds are provided by the Illinois Department of Commerce and funded under the federal Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act. 
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Friday, August 05, 2016
Economic Alliance Applauds Signage of Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Act (HB5729)
Too often, students across Illinois have graduated from high school unprepared for their next step in life, whether it is college or career. Therefore, we applaud Governor Rauner and the General Assembly on the passage and signing of HB5729, the Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Act (PWR) to address this need.
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Friday, July 29, 2016
Bears Camp VIP Event Draws Greater Chicago Developers
The Economic Alliance, in partnership with the Village of Bourbonnais and Kankakee County Convention & Visitors Bureau, kicked off the 15th year of Chicago Bears Training Camp at Olivet Nazarene University with a Developers Day event on July 28. Attendees included Greater Chicago commercial and industrial real estate brokers, developers and manufacturers, along with local business leadership.
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Friday, July 08, 2016
State of Illinois Issues Statement of Eligibility for Kankakee Downtown Historic District
After initial assessment, the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency has determined that the Kankakee Downtown Historic District is eligible for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places. In correspondence dated July 5, the agency informed local project partners that the proposed district meets National Register criteria for both historical and architectural significance. The City of Kankakee, Kankakee Development Corp. and the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County are pursuing the honorary National Register of Historic Places designation in an effort to secure tax incentives for preservation-based property rehabilitation.
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Monday, June 27, 2016
Registration Now Open for ACCELERATE 2016 Small Business Conference & Expo
Both attendee and exhibitor registrations are now being accepted for the 2nd Annual ACCELERATE Small Business Conference & Expo, to be held Thursday, September 8, 2016, at the Kankakee Community College Riverfront Campus in Kankakee. The day-long event, which attracted more than 100 small business owners in its 2015 inaugural year, will feature education, networking and promotional opportunities, along with keynotes by Spikeball CEO and Kankakee native Chris Ruder as well as best-selling author Summer Alexander. Cost is $30 for Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce members, $40 for non-Chamber members. Breakfast and lunch are included. A Chamber Business After Hours, open to all registered attendees, will conclude the day’s events.
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Wednesday, June 08, 2016
Kankakee-Bradley MSA #7 Nationally in Middle-income Share

Against a backdrop of a steadily declining middle class, the Kankakee-Bradley Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is showing outstanding growth in its proportion of middle-income individuals. According to a new report by Pew Research Center, the Kankakee-Bradley MSA – which shares boundaries with Kankakee County – saw growth in its share of middle-income adults, from 60 percent in 2000 to 62 percent in 2014, positioning the area among the Top 10 U.S. Middle-income Metros.

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Monday, June 06, 2016
Aqua Illinois Announces $15 Million Investment in Kankakee Region Water Treatment Plant
Aqua Illinois has announced plans to complete $15 million in improvements to the Joseph Donovan Regional Water Treatment Plant in the City of Kankakee over the next two years. This investment is part of Aqua's 2016 capital plan of $15 million for the Kankakee Division, $10 million of which is allocated for water distribution system upgrades. 
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Thursday, June 02, 2016
Alliance Launches Redeveloped Attraction-focused Website
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County this week launched its newly redeveloped website – kankakeecountyed.org. Among the site’s enhancements are better positioning of the community as a part of an asset-rich region with global access, and dramatically increased opportunities for user engagement and activation.
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Thursday, May 05, 2016
Tim Nugent Appointed Alliance President/CEO
The Board of Directors of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announces the appointment of Tim Nugent as President/CEO. The appointment is effective immediately.
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Tuesday, May 03, 2016
GadellNet Announces Chicago Southland Expansion, Kankakee County Branch
St. Louis-based GadellNet, an outsourced IT consulting firm offering help desk IT support, network engineering, business and technology management consulting, application development and hosted cloud services, announces its expansion to Kankakee County. 
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Tuesday, April 19, 2016
ReferenceUSA Lunch & Learn Set for May 2
Through a joint partnership of the Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce, Kankakee Public Library and the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, high-value strategic business intelligence from ReferenceUSA is now available free of charge to Kankakee County industries, entrepreneurs, residents and others considering investment in the community.
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Monday, April 11, 2016
EnterpriseU 2016 Finalists Announced
After review and scoring by Round 1 judges, including one finance professional, seven EnterpriseU 2016 business plans have been selected for final judging.
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Monday, April 04, 2016
Nicor Gas Renews its Investment in the Economic Alliance for 2016
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announces that Nicor Gas, an AGL Resources Company, has formally invested in its 2016 program of work. 
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Monday, April 04, 2016
ComEd Changes Policy to Help Fuel Economic Growth in Region
In a move that is intended to make northern Illinois more attractive to expanding and prospective businesses, ComEd has modified a policy that requires some business customers seeking new or expanded electric service to provide an upfront deposit.
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Thursday, March 31, 2016
$10M Sewer Infrastructure Work, Industrial Park Planning Kick Off for New I-57 Interchange at Bourbonnais Parkway
Village of Bourbonnais officials are taking the lead in readying for development 1,200+ acres of industrial TIF property 50 miles south of Chicago at the new Interstate 57 interchange at Exit 319/Bourbonnais Parkway. 
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Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Shark Tank-featured Spikeball CEO Chris Ruder to Headline ACCELERATE 2016 Small Business Conference & Expo
Spikeball Inc. CEO and Kankakee native Chris Ruder will keynote the 2nd Annual ACCELERATE Small Business Conference & Expo.
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Thursday, March 24, 2016
I-KAN and Coalition for Hope & Excellence in Education Offer 2016 “Tour the Local Industries” Course for Educators
Continuing the effort to build awareness about Kankakee County's available job opportunities and associated career pathways, the Iroquois-Kankakee Regional Office of Education (I-KAN) is providing local educators the 2016 "Tour the Local Industries" professional development course.
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Tuesday, March 22, 2016
Comprehensive Business Intelligence Available through ReferenceUSA Partnership
Strategic business intelligence provided by ReferenceUSA is now available free of charge to Kankakee County, Illinois, industries and entrepreneurs, as well as investors considering relocation to the community.
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Monday, March 21, 2016
Kankakee County Economic Development Symposium Featuring Chicago Fed and Community Reinvestment Fund USA Scheduled for April 12, 2016
Local business, government and community leaders are hosting a symposium to support economic development activities in Kankakee County. 
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Thursday, March 17, 2016
SERVPRO Breaks Ground on 50,000 Square Foot Manteno, Illinois, Facility
SERVPRO of Kankakee County, Matteson-Homewood and Chicago Heights/Crete-Beecher announce groundbreaking for a new 50,000 square foot Chicago region service facility in Manteno, IL.
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Thursday, February 25, 2016
Metal Fabricator ABC Coating Co. Inc. Breaks Ground for New Manteno, IL, Facility
Tulsa, OK-based ABC Coating Co. Inc. announces groundbreaking for its new Chicago region metal fabrication facility in Manteno, IL. 
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Thursday, February 18, 2016
KCC Trains "Rad Rides" Metal Fab Artists
Walton and Modert work for a world-renowned auto shop, Rad Rides by Troy, Inc. in Manteno, Illinois, where they specialize in hand-crafted automobiles. 
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Tuesday, February 02, 2016
Lunch & Learn: Introducing WorkKankakee.org
Kankakee County has many resources to deliver needed work readiness skills, in today’s fast-paced economy.
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Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Governor Rauner Announces Formation of Non-Profit Economic Development Organization
Governor Rauner today announced in his State of the State address that leaders at the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity and business stakeholders will collaborate in organizing a newly formed private, non-profit organization focusing exclusively on increasing Illinois’ competitiveness for job creation and investment.
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Tuesday, January 26, 2016
Enbridge Supports KCC Welding & Electrical Technology Programs
Enbridge, a pipeline firm that has been running pipeline through portions of Kankakee, Livingston, Grundy and Will counties, has donated $5,000 for KCC scholarships for welding and electrical technology students.
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Tuesday, January 12, 2016
2015 Major Projects Yield $485M in Capital Investment
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County released preliminary figures last week for 2015 capital investment, new square footage and new jobs based on 30 announced expansion and new development projects.
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Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Kankakee County Launches 2016 EnterpriseU Program with January 28 Public Information Session
Planning is well underway for the 5th Annual EnterpriseU Entrepreneurs Boot Camp & Business Plan Competition, which kicks off with a public information session on Thursday, January 28!
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Monday, December 28, 2015
Spikeball, Plochman's Mustard, LN Engineering Featured on FOX Chicago
Economic Alliance of Kankakee County Director of Marketing & Business Attraction Lisa Wogan showcases Kankakee County, Illinois, industry and innovation on FOX Good Day Chicago 7-30-15. 
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Monday, December 28, 2015
EDF Renewable Energy Expands with Kelly Creek Wind Farm
The Kankakee County Board in August approved a special use permit for the Kelly Creek Wind Farm, a 108-turbine project that is projected to create 12 permanent maintenance jobs and 120 construction jobs locally (700+ jobs for the State of Illinois), in addition to generating in excess of $3 million in new property taxes, as reported by the Daily Journal.
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Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Redevelopment Announced for I-57 Exit 312 at Kankakee
A high-profile retail redevelopment has been announced for Interstate 57 Exit 312 at Kankakee. 
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Tuesday, December 22, 2015
New Production Facility for BrickStone Brewery
Bourbonnais-based BrickStone Brewery unveiled its new 8,100 square foot, 50-barrel, four-vessel production facility in September. The facility will allow the award-winning operation to quadruple its output, from 5,000 kegs to more than 20,000 kegs per year. 
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Monday, December 21, 2015
Happy Holidays from Plochman's Mustard and the Manteno Chamber of Commerce
Manteno, Illinois-based iconic yellow barrel mustard maker Plochman's joins with the Manteno Chamber of Commerce to send Kankakee County a zesty holiday greeting ... Take a listen!
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Monday, December 14, 2015
Economic Alliance Launches President/CEO Search
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County has launched a nationwide leadership search following the recent departure of former President/CEO Mike Van Mill. 
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Thursday, December 10, 2015
Riverside Healthcare Completes Rush-Riverside Cancer Institute Expansion
Riverside Healthcare in November announced the completion and grand opening of the expanded Rush-Riverside Cancer Institute in Bourbonnais, Illinois. 
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Thursday, December 10, 2015
$16M River Station Senior Apartment Project Breaks Ground
A key component of the City of Kankakee's West Downtown District Master Plan, the River Station Senior Apartment complex broke ground in November. A joint effort of the city, Mercy Housing Lakefront, the Kankakee County Housing Development Corporation and Presence St. Mary's Hospital, the $16 million project aligns afforable living with accessibility and support for healthy aging.
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Tuesday, December 08, 2015
Alliance President/CEO Position Posted
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County is a not-for-profit public/private partnership responsible for coordinating countywide economic development initiatives. The Alliance is seeking an accomplished candidate for the position of President/Chief Executive Officer to oversee implementation of Kankakee County’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS), manage the economic development organization and provide technical assistance to local governments.
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Thursday, November 12, 2015
Great Lakes Basin Railroad, IL DCEO Unveil New Developments at Alliance November Board Meeting
Michelle Michals of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) was on hand at the Alliance Board of Directors meeting at Olivet Nazarene University Thursday, November 12 to detail major economic development news that the state released Wednesday related to EDGE tax credits and the certification of the state's Enterprise Zones, two of which are in Kankakee County.
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Wednesday, November 04, 2015
Kankakee County Launches 2015 Small Business Saturday Campaign
For the first time, Kankakee County small business owners are collaborating to promote special discounts and boost foot traffic during the popular nationwide retail promotion Small Business Saturday. The event, set for Saturday, November 28, will involve retailers across the county that have opted to participate in the free cooperative marketing campaign being driven by the Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce.
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Tuesday, October 27, 2015
KCC and NIU Alliance Creates New Engineering Degree Pathways
A pair of new agreements between Kankakee Community College and Northern Illinois University will make it easier for KCC students to earn college degrees that will set them on the path to career success.
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Tuesday, October 27, 2015
Van Mill Elected President of Illinois Enterprise Zone Association
Michael Van Mill, President/CEO of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, was elected president of the Illinois Enterprise Zone Association at the organization's fall conference in Rockford earlier this month. 
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Monday, October 26, 2015
KCC/KCCC Launch Leadership & Management Institute
In collaboration with the Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce, Kankakee Community College is launching an exciting new Leadership and Management Institute to enhance skills for new and seasoned professionals.
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Wednesday, October 21, 2015
Enterprise Zone Update: Performance, Tax Advantages and 2016 Changes
On October 1, Economic Alliance of Kankakee County President/CEO and Kankakee County Enterprise Zone Administrator Mike Van Mill provided a briefing on the performance of the two Enterprise Zones that exist in Kankakee County and the tax advantages that they provide to business located within their boundaries. Also outlined were changes to the program that users should anticipate in 2016.
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Tuesday, October 13, 2015
Van Mill Awarded Certified Economic Developer Recertification
Michael Van Mill, President/CEO of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, has been awarded recertification by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) effective October 1, 2015. Van Mill first achieved the designation in 2102. 
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Thursday, October 08, 2015
THRIVE 2016 "The Innovation Issue" Released
Across all facets of life and work in Kankakee County, we are seeing significant moves to innovate – to combine resources and ideas in fresh ways – in order to meet the needs of an eager and dynamic marketplace. Our achievements in this arena were recognized again in 2015 by the Milken Institute, which named Kankakee County Illinois' #1 Small Metro for Job Growth, Technology Growth and Economic Vitality.
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Friday, October 02, 2015
New “Opportunity 3000” Awareness Campaign Promotes Paths to Career Success in Kankakee County
In conjunction with National Manufacturing Day and Manufacturing Month in Illinois, a new awareness video and campaign were launched today to highlight 3,000 local job postings and to support workforce development in Kankakee County. 
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Wednesday, September 30, 2015
McColly Bennett and Terraco Marketing 150,000 SF Class A Office Building in Bourbonnais
Hager Pacific Properties has selected the team of Bourbonnais, IL-based McColly Bennett Commercial and Wilmette, IL-based Terraco Inc. to market for sale or lease the Bourbonnais Corporate Headquarters Building, a Class A office complex located at One Cigna Drive, Bourbonnais, IL.
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Tuesday, September 08, 2015
Peoples Bank of Kankakee County Invests in Economic Alliance Program
Peoples Bank of Kankakee County presented a $2,500 contribution to Economic Alliance President and CEO Mike Van Mill yesterday to support the countywide economic development organization's operations and 2015 program of work.
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Thursday, July 30, 2015
Kankakee-Bradley Metropolitan Statistical Area Logs Record Number of Exports
The U.S. Department of Commerce today released a report highlighting goods exports from U.S. metropolitan areas for 2014. 
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Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Sales Guru Bill Guertin to Kick Off ACCELERATE 2015
In an overworked, out-of-balance society, how can you as a small business professional stay positive and fulfilled in the right ways? Nationally renowned sales guru and Kankakee County native Bill Guertin will provide some practical answers to this question in his kick off to the upcoming Accelerate 2015 Small Business Conference & Expo.In an overworked, out-of-balance society, how can you as a small business professional stay positive and fulfilled in the right ways? Nationally renowned sales guru and Kankakee County native Bill Guertin will provide some practical answers to this question in his kick off to the upcoming Accelerate 2015 Small Business Conference & Expo.  
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Monday, July 20, 2015
Alliance Responds to Announced Closure of Bunge Oils
The Economic Alliance is disappointed to learn of the impending closure of Bunge Oils in Bradley, a long-standing member of Kankakee County's thriving food processing sector. We understand that this is a market-driven closure that will involve consolidation of Bradley's operations to other Bunge sites.
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Monday, July 20, 2015
Construction to begin at Interstate 57 and Bourbonnais Parkway interchange
After a minor delay by Governor Bruce Rauner, we are pleased to announce construction will be begin for the new Interchange at Interstate 57 and Bourbonnais Parkway. Construction of this $46 million project was awarded to Kankakee Valley Construction Company providing numerous construction jobs to Kankakee County for the next 2-3 years.
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Thursday, July 09, 2015
Riverside Healthcare Supports Economic Alliance with $2,500 Investment
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announces that Riverside Healthcare has formally invested in its 2015 program of work. Riverside's donation of $2,500 supports operations and programming for Kankakee County's umbrella 501(c)(6) public-private economic development organization.
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Monday, July 06, 2015
Kankakee County Enterprise Zone Applications Pass First Round of State Review
Kankakee County's two enterprise zones are one step closer to re-designation, according to official notification from the state of Illinois in June. 
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Tuesday, June 30, 2015
“Jump Start Your Small Business” August 5 with ACCELERATE 2015 Small Business Conference & Expo
The Illinois Small Business Development Center at Kankakee Community College, Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce and Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announce the inaugural ACCELERATE Small Business Conference & Expo, to be held Wednesday, August 5 at KCC's Riverfront Campus in Kankakee.
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Tuesday, June 23, 2015
Steve Wilder named Chairman of Kankakee Valley Airport Authority Board of Directors
Steve Wilder has been elected chair of the Kankakee Valley Airport Authority (KVAA) Board of Directors. Wilder will lead the Board of Directors in fulfilling the KVAA's strategic plan for airport development and aviation in the region.
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Friday, June 12, 2015
Flying Squirrel Aerofilm Takes Off with EnterpriseU 2015
Final oral presentations for the EnterpriseU 2015 Entrepreneurs Boot Camp & Business Plan Competition were held on June 11, 2015. 
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Friday, June 12, 2015
I-KAN and Coalition for Hope & Excellence in Education (CHEE) Provide First Local Industry Familiarization Course
In an effort to build awareness about Kankakee County's plentiful available job opportunities and associated career pathways, 20 local educators will take part in a first-ever local industry familiarization course.
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Tuesday, June 09, 2015
ABC 7 Chicago: CSL Kankakee on Front Lines of Flu Fight
Kankakee County's largest industry - global biopharm leader CSL Behring - was featured June 5 in a flu vaccine segment produced by ABC 7 Chicago. 
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Tuesday, June 02, 2015
EnterpriseU 2015 Finalists Announced
A total of 18 aspiring and expanding small business owners have entered the 2015 edition of Kankakee County's EnterpriseU Entrepreneurs Boot Camp & Business Plan Competition. 
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Thursday, May 28, 2015
Kankakee County Unemployment Drops to 5.8%, Job Growth Strongest in Illinois Again in April
The Kankakee-Bradley Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which shares boundaries with Kankakee County, continued to experience the strongest job growth in the state of Illinois in April over the last year. 
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Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Alliance Q2 2015 Ad Released
The Economic Alliance has released its Q2 2015 advertisement for publication. The 10" x 7" ad reinforces Kankakee County's distinction as #1 Small Metro in Illinois for economic vitality and job growth according to Milken Institute and #9 Small Metro for Cost of Doing Business nationwide according to Forbes. 
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Thursday, May 21, 2015
Nicor Gas Supports Economic Alliance with $4,000 Investment
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County announces that Nicor Gas, an AGL Resources Company, has formally invested in its 2015 program of work. The utility's donation of $4,000 supports operations and programming for Kankakee County's umbrella 501(c)(6) public-private economic development organization.
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Monday, May 18, 2015
Screening of Documentary Film “Maker” May 28 at Feed Arts & Cultural Center
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, Feed Arts & Cultural Center, Kankakee Public Library and the South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium (SMHEC) will host a screening of the award-winning documentary film "Maker" on Thursday, May 28 at 7:00 p.m. 
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Wednesday, May 13, 2015
KCC President Dr. John Avendano to Chair Coalition for Hope & Excellence in Education (CHEE) Board of Directors
The Coalition for Hope & Excellence in Education (CHEE) – Kankakee County's workforce development collaborative – has announced its board of directors. 
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Monday, May 11, 2015
RFP Issued: I-57 Bourbonnais Parkway Interchange Industrial/Commercial Development Feasibility Study
The Village of Bourbonnais, Illinois, in partnership with the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County and the villages of Bradley and Manteno, invites qualified consultant teams with experience in developing comprehensive feasibility studies for industrial/commercial development to submit a written response to this Request for Proposals (RFP).  
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Tuesday, May 05, 2015
Catalyst Director Pursuing NBIA Certification
Jesse Erickson, Director of Catalyst Innovation Center in Bradley, Illinois, is pursuing an Incubator Management Certificate from the National Business Incubator Association (NBIA). 
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Monday, May 04, 2015
Van Mill, Bennett Present at IEZA Spring Conference
Economic Alliance of Kankakee County President and CEO Mike Van Mill and McColly Bennett Commercial broker Jeff Bennett presented at the Spring Conference of the Illinois Enterprise Zone Association (IEZA), held April 29 to May 1 in Springfield.
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Monday, April 27, 2015
Kankakee County Unemployment Lowest Since ‘07, Job Growth Strongest in Illinois
The Kankakee-Bradley Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which shares boundaries with Kankakee County, experienced the strongest job growth in the state of Illinois over the last year.
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Thursday, April 16, 2015
Kankakee County Day in Springfield 2015
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County participated in a broad-based coalition that traveled to Springfield on Tuesday, April 14.
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Wednesday, April 08, 2015
Screening of Documentary Film "Maker" April 20
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, ONU's Catalyst Innovation Center and the South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium will host a screening of the award-winning documentary film "Maker" on Monday, April 20 at 6:30 p.m.
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Tuesday, April 07, 2015
Plochman's Mustard Expanding, Hiring at Manteno, Illinois, HQ
Iconic Midwest condiment producer Plochman's Mustard continues to expand its core mustard products, adding production lines, new shifts and more than 20 new employees in 2014-15 at its Manteno, Illinois, headquarters. 
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Monday, April 06, 2015
Sears Holdings Celebrates New Investment, 25th Year in Manteno, Illinois
Kicking off a year-long celebration of the company's 25 years in Kankakee County, Illinois, Sears Holdings Corp. - Manteno Distribution Center held a ribbon cutting March 18 for the operation's new "Pick-to-Voice" technology and related facility investments.
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Monday, April 06, 2015
Governor Rauner Visits Hoekstra Transportation
Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner visited Hoekstra Transportation in March as part of his promotional tour to outlline his vision for enhancing the state's business climate. 
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Friday, April 03, 2015
New HQ for KCC’s Premier Renewable Energy Program Breaks Ground
Community leaders broke ground at a formal ceremony March 31 for a new building to house Kankakee Community College's award-winning Electrical Technology program.
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Monday, March 30, 2015
Health Care Sector Vibrant in Kankakee County
The United States spends more on health care than any other country in the world, at an estimated 17.7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2013, according to Deloitte Development's "2015 Health Care Providers Outlook."
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Monday, March 30, 2015
Alliance hosts Daily Journal Progress Awards April 8
The Economic Alliance is proud to join the Daily Journal in hosting the 2015 Progress Awards on Wednesday, April 8 at Kankakee's Majestic Theatre. 
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Monday, March 30, 2015
Van Drunen Farms Expansion Underway
One of the country's leading manufacturers and suppliers of natural, conventional and organic, whole-food fruit, vegetable, herb and other specialty ingredients is considerably expanding its Momence, Illinois, operational footprint. 
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Tuesday, March 24, 2015
EnterpriseU Class of 2015 Announced
A total of 18 aspiring and expanding small business owners have entered the 2015 edition of Kankakee County's EnterpriseU Entrepreneurs Boot Camp & Business Plan Competition. 
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Friday, March 06, 2015
Economic Alliance publishes 2014 Annual Report
The Economic Alliance of Kankakee County in March published and released its 2014 Annual Report. The document - available online here - recaps the organization's efforts and achievements in Business Retention & Expansion, Business Attraction, Workforce Development, Regional Development, Local Community Development and Promotion in the January to December 2014 time window.
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Kankakee County Progress Award nominations sought by Daily Journal
On Wednesday, April 8, 2015, The Daily Journal will honor members of our community with 10 different professional awards celebrating the spirit of innovation, entrepreneurship and business success.
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Kankakee Community College Employer Survey of Workforce Training Needs
The following letter and survey link are provided on behalf of our community partner, Kankakee Community College. 
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Monday, February 23, 2015
Application Period Opens for EnterpriseU 2015 Entrepreneurs Boot Camp & Business Plan Competition
Kicking off National Entrepreneurship Week, organizers of Kankakee County's business plan competition "EnterpriseU" issued a call for applicants for their 2015 program at a press conference held Monday, February 23.
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Monday, February 23, 2015
Enterprise Zones in Kankakee County: Your Engines for Jobs and Investment
The following opinion editorial was published in the February 17, 2015, edition of The Bourbonnais Herald.
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Wednesday, February 18, 2015
City of Kankakee Resident Fair Housing Survey
The City of Kankakee receives federal Entitlement Program funds from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) which are used to provide housing resources and programs for current and future homeowners. To receive funding from HUD, the City of Kankakee must develop a Consolidated Plan that identifies priorities and objectives for addressing the community needs over a five year period. 
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Thursday, February 12, 2015
Riverside Healthcare President/CEO Phil Kambic Elected 2015-16 Alliance Board Chairman
Riverside Healthcare President/CEO Phil Kambic assumed the chairmanship of the board of directors of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County at the organization's February 12 meeting. Kambic, who has served on the Alliance board since 2012, succeeds HomeStar Bank President Pat Martin for a 2-year term.
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Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Kankakee County Named Illinois’ Top Small Metro for Business Again in 2014
Kankakee County retained its position in 2014 as Illinois' leading small metropolitan area in economic vitality, according to findings released in January by global economic think tank the Milken Institute.
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Monday, January 26, 2015
Shovel-ready site planning underway at Bourbonnais Pkwy Industrial TIF
With the much anticipated letting of the new I-57 interchange at Bourbonnais Parkway, public- and private-sector developers in Kankakee County are readying industrial and commercial sites and boosting utility service to the area.
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Thursday, January 15, 2015
Kankakee County startup booster EnterpriseU returning in February
One of Kankakee County's most popular, most effective small business development programs is returning in 2015.
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Monday, December 15, 2014
Illiana Corridor Project Receives Federal Approval
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) signed the Illiana Corridor Tier Two Record of Decision, marking the completion of the project's environmental planning phase. 
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014
KCC New Business Leader Meet & Greet
Many of the area's largest corporations have added new senior leadership.
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Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Catalyst Innovation Center launched in Bradley
Marking the launch of the Catalyst Innovation Center for Kankakee County, Illinois, area business, education and community leaders gathered at the historic David Bradley Building in Bradley on Tuesday, December 9, 2014. Founded to provide comprehensive services and programs to support both business growth and entrepreneurial opportunities in Kankakee County, this business and research venture is a cooperative effort of Olivet Nazarene University, Riverside Healthcare and the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County.
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Thursday, December 04, 2014
Kankakee County multinationals BASF and DOW support launch of workforce development initiative Coalition for Hope and Excellence in Education (CHEE)
Industry, professions, private citizens urged to take the "A-Team Challenge"
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Friday, November 21, 2014
Kankakee County #6 Nationally in Income Growth
Figures released November 20 by the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) show Kankakee County leading most metropolitan statistical areas nationwide in personal income growth. 
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Wednesday, November 05, 2014
KCC named "Clean Energy Training Provider of the Year" by Interstate Renewable Energy Council
Kankakee Community College (KCC) has been awarded the 2014 IREC Accredited Clean Energy Training Provider of the Year by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC). The award was presented at Solar Power International in Las Vegas, NV.
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Wednesday, November 05, 2014
$53.3M Army Aviation Support Facility and Readiness Center breaks ground in Kankakee
The Illinois National Guard held a groundbreaking ceremony for a $53.3 million Army Aviation Support Facility and Readiness Center in Kankakee on October 29.
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Monday, November 03, 2014
CSL Behring plans $240 million expansion at its Kankakee operations center
A leader in the plasma protein therapeutics industry, CSL Behring plans a $450 million, two-site, global expansion at its production facilities in Kankakee, Illinois, and Melbourne, Australia.
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Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Kankakee County among leading metros statewide in jobs created, reports Illinois Department of Employment Security
Report shows year-over-year growth of 600 jobs, unemployment lowest since 2007
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Monday, October 20, 2014
Wogan Completes 46th Annual Illinois BEDC Course
Lisa Wogan, Director of Marketing & Business Attraction for the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, has completed the Illinois Basic Economic Development Course, held October 13-17 in Naperville. The BEDC is a required first step in pursuit of the economic development field's interdisciplinary CEcD certification.
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Wednesday, October 01, 2014
eDF Renewable Energy and Microsoft Corp. break ground on Kankakee County's Pilot Hill Wind Project
EDF Renewable Energy (EDF RE) and Microsoft Corporation today celebrated the launch of the Pilot Hill Wind Project with a groundbreaking ceremony. 
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Thursday, September 18, 2014
Kankakee County Real GDP Growth exceeds national average, second highest in state of Illinois
Continuing the trend of favorable economic reports for Kankakee County, the Kankakee-Bradley Metropolitan Statistical Area maintained its position as the second strongest metro in the state of Illinois in 2013 for growth in real gross domestic product (GDP), according to figures released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis.
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Friday, September 12, 2014
Forbes ranks Kankakee County ninth nationally in cost of doing business, second in Illinois for job growth
Forbes' recently released   "Best Small Places for Business and Careers" ranking positions Kankakee County favorably among its peer communities in cost of doing business, job growth and high-tech employment, reports the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County. 
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Monday, September 08, 2014
Kankakee Housing Summit Lunch & Learn 9/16
The Economic Alliance is a proud host of the 2014 Kankakee Housing Summit, set for Tuesday, September 16. 
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Wednesday, August 27, 2014
"Powership" author kicks off Manufacturing Month at KCC
Business strategist, IMPACTinsights founder and author of POWERSHIP, Kathie Topel will kick of Kankakee Community College's National Manufacturing Month activities with an address to local business leaders on Wednesday, October 1, 2014. 
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Governor Quinn Announces $5 Million Capital Investment in Kankakee Community College
New Addition to Train Students in Green Energy and Other Emerging Technology Fields
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Thursday, July 31, 2014
State Lauds CSL Behring
Multinational's investment at Kankakee plant earns 2014 Edie Award
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Thursday, July 31, 2014
Ring Container Success
100 million bottles per year, #1 in efficiency at Kankakee facility
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Thursday, July 31, 2014
Bear Down!
New Community Partnership Engaging Fans Year Round
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Thursday, July 31, 2014
#1 Small City in Illinois
Resilient Kankakee County Tops "Small Cities" in Illinois
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Thursday, July 31, 2014
Kankakee County Industries Optimistic on Local Business Climate, Growth
New expansions and hiring anticipated, according to recent Alliance survey.
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Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Pilot Hill Wind Project: Microsoft's largest investment in wind energy, powering Chicago datacenters
EDF Renewable Energy (EDF RE) today announced the company has secured a 96 percent stake in the 175 megawatt (MW) Pilot Hill Wind Project (formerly known as K4) from Orion Energy Group LLC (Orion) and Vision Energy LLC. The project benefits from a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Microsoft Corporation.
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Monday, June 30, 2014
NEW EMPLOYEE TRAINING FUNDS NOW AVAILABLE
Workforce Board receives grant to support Incumbent Worker Training (IWT)
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Friday, May 23, 2014
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE CERTIFIES COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY FOR KANKAKEE COUNTY
Kankakee County is in position to strengthen its economy by building upon its current economic base, promoting education as an economic development tool and enhancing quality of life, according to its newly completed five-year Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS).
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Friday, December 13, 2013
KANKAKEE COUNTY COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY READY FOR PUBLIC VIEWING
Kankakee County and the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County seek public comment on Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy
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Monday, October 21, 2013
ILLIANA VOTE DOESN'T DIMINISH DEBATE
ADVOCATES ENTHUSED; FOES VOW TO CONTINUE FIGHT
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Lisa Wogan
Director of Marketing & Business Attraction

Tim Nugent
President/CEO

Sheila Martin
Assistant