Alton, IL

Manufacturing Coalition Wants Clarity

Story by WBGZ Radio

A coalition of manufacturers and other groups want lawmakers in Springfield to give them some certainty.

The Advance Illinois Manufacturing (AIM) group says the legislature needs to give the state’s struggling manufacturing sector a boost by providing tax incentives for things like a research and development tax credit.

Illinois Manufacturing Association’s Mark Denzler said with the state having lost more than 14,000 manufacturing jobs last year alone, employers are hoping to find long-term stability.

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“Companies are looking five, 10, 20 years down the road about what products they’re going to develop and this endless cycle of it expires, it’s gone for six months or a year, it comes back,” Denzler said, “we’ve got to stop that cycle.”

Denzler said the research and development tax credit has expired in the past year, the same time the manufacturing industry saw substantial job losses.

Meanwhile a lawmaker pushing for the tax credits said the move won’t take tax dollars away from social services, it will expand the economy and allow for more resources.

Democratic Rep. Mike Zalewski addressed concerns that funds for social services would take a hit if the state provides tax incentives for the manufacturing sector.

“We’ll see more jobs coming to Illinois,” Zalewski said. “We’ll see more revenue coming in and the revenue side of the equation will allow us to do the things we need to do to fund those services.”

AIM said the jobs climate will improve if there are tax incentives for research and development, purchasing credits and incentives on tangible products used in manufacturing. The group also said there needs to be permanent credits for the state’s coal industry to encourage mining, construction, and other operations.


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