The 44th District Senator said he will also ask Governor Quinn and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley to support legislation he is sponsoring that would prevent municipalities across Illinois from unfairly restricting “big box” stores from locating within their borders so that retailers can bring economic development and new jobs to these areas.
Senate Bill 2186 would bar a municipality from enacting ordinances that prohibit or restrict a retailer from locating within the municipality if the retailer otherwise meets all necessary requirements for construction and development.
“Illinois has lost 700,000 jobs over the last six years because of an Administration that was not friendly to business and job creation. We need to bring those jobs back, each of which means about $4,200 in state tax revenues, without higher tax rates. We don’t do that with policies that are anti-business and anti-investment,” Senator Brady said.
Each mega-store could generate an estimated $5 million annually in sales tax revenues for the city and state, and create job opportunities for about 400 employees. The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce believes the city could support 10 additional mega-retail stores with full-service groceries.
“That’s $50 million a year in sales tax revenues alone and 4,000 new, revenue-producing full-time jobs the city apparently doesn’t want,” Senator Brady said. “Municipal leaders who are trying to keep businesses from locating within their corporate boundaries – for whatever reasons – are denying their citizens jobs during a time of 25-year record unemployment, limiting much-needed city and state tax revenues, and ignoring quality-of-life concerns in many neighborhoods.”
Senate Bill 2186 addresses situations such as an attempt in 2006 by the Chicago City Council to enact a “big box store” ordinance that would set wage and benefit standards for large retail stores such as Wal-Mart, Lowe’s and Target. Mayor Daley vetoed that ordinance, but the threat of another effort to pass a “big box store” ordinance” has squelched economic development opportunities by mega-retailers within the city’s corporate boundaries.
“Not one new job has been created by Chicago’s ‘anti-big box store’ attitude. But the City has laid off hundreds of workers from good-paying jobs because of its revenue shortfalls,” Senator Brady said.