March 13 – State Senator Chapin Rose knows about central Illinois’ potential to grow jobs and be an industry leader and now he is sharing that potential with state leaders.
Rose invited Illinois Department of Agriculture Director Raymond Poe, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Director Sean McCarthy, and local chamber and economic leaders for a tour of ADM’s James R. Randall Research Lab, the Midwest Inland Port, and the Integrated Bioprocessing Research Lab (IBRL) in at the University of Illinois Monday afternoon.
Rose says it’s important to let state and city leaders know what the I-72 corridor has to offer so they can spread the word about the potential.
“Having the two directors here today is a big deal; the goal here is to raise the profile so when they travel all over the world – to trade shows or anything else – they are thinking of the I-72 corridor,” Rose says. “They need to be thinking about what’s here in Decatur already, but also what the IBRL in Champaign can mean to this industry.”
Rose says the bioprocessing sector has the potential of creating up to 20,000 jobs and it’s important that central Illinois competes for them. Rose says Decatur and Champaign have their own advantages with the IBRL lab in Champaign and the production and shipping capacity in Decatur. Putting them together is a greater benefit.
“When put all of the resources together you have something that no one else in the world has,” Rose says. “I want these guys to know what we have on I-72.”
“Chapin is on the right track and this is definitely something the Department of Ag is really interested in,” Poe said.
“We are always interested in growing jobs within the state so I’m excited to see what this area has to offer,” McCarthy added.
The group heard from ADM Vice President of Process and Chemical Research Dr. Paul Bloom about some the company’s research into renewable materials and bioproducts. Recently, ADM and DuPont created a new monomer called FDME, which can be used in a number of packaging products.
Rose and State Senator Andy Manar have filed legislation in Springfield that would provide tax credits for companies who invest in the bioprocessing industry in Illinois.
“I’m taking every chance I can get to show off what we have here,” Rose said.