Governor Pat Quinn announced Cloverleaf Cold Storage Company will open a $30 million refrigerated warehouse and distribution center that will create 155 local full-time jobs. The facility will serve the Smithfield Farmland Corporation, which has an adjacent site in Monmouth. This announcement follows recent news that Illinois’ unemployment rate is at its lowest point since 2008 and is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to keep the progress going by creating jobs and driving Illinois’ economy forward.
“This new facility will create more than 150 good jobs and help Cloverleaf and Smithfield Farmland grow together in western Illinois,” Governor Quinn said. “The cooperative effort between state agencies and local officials to build this remarkable facility shows that even in our Prairie State, we’ll move mountains when it comes to creating jobs.”
The 235,000-square-foot refrigerated warehouse and distribution center is the first Illinois site for Cloverleaf, which has 15 locations around the country. Cloverleaf is a family-owned company that dates from 1934 and provides public and contract storage for the meat processing and packaging industries. The company is based in Sioux City, Iowa and has more than 900 employees.
“Cloverleaf’s investment in this new facility highlights not only the strategic location that Illinois occupies in the food distribution network, it emphasizes our faith that we will be able to hire and retain a highly-skilled and technically proficient workforce,” Cloverleaf spokesman Adam Feiges said.
“There has been great cooperation between private enterprise and state and local governments, including the necessary capital investments, infrastructure work and incentives, to help make this project a reality,” Monmouth Mayor Rod Davies said.
Cloverleaf hopes to expand the new facility to 315,000 square feet within three to five years and increase employment by another 50 jobs.
Cloverleaf will receive an assistance package with an estimated value of $6 million, a major determining factor in the company’s decision to locate in Monmouth. The city of Monmouth and government agencies in Warren County have authorized incentives totaling $3.4 million for the project, most of it in the form of 10-year abatement on property taxes.
Programs from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) will provide the company an estimated $1.2 million in benefits, including an investment tax credit and a sales tax exemption for being in an enterprise zone. The DCEO package includes a $325,000 grant to the city for infrastructure work associated with the plant. The Illinois Department of Transportation has committed to approximately $1.5 million in road improvements, much of it for widening U.S. Route 67 and a new access road to accommodate truck traffic. DCEO’s agreement with Cloverleaf requires the company to repay a portion of the grant if it fails to hit its target of 155 new jobs by the end of 2015.
Last week, Governor Quinn announced a new company is coming to Galesburg, just a short drive from Monmouth. The company is Pegasus MFG Inc., a provider of precision parts and assemblies that is relocating from California and bringing 17 jobs.
This event follows news that Illinois’ unemployment rate for April dropped to 7.9 percent – its lowest level in more than five years and lower than when the Governor took office. Since the peak of the recession, Illinois has added nearly 250,000 jobs. More people working in Illinois last month pushed the rate down 0.5 points, the lowest rate since December 2008 and largest monthly decline in the history of this data series that began in 1976.
Since taking office and inheriting decades of mismanagement, the Governor has enacted worker’s compensation reform and unemployment insurance reform to make Illinois a better place to do business, in addition to major fiscal reforms such as pension reform and Medicaid restructuring that are restoring fiscal stability to Illinois. Today Governor Quinn is pushing a new tax cut for businesses that provide job training. By lowering the cost to train workers, this will make it easier for businesses to create new jobs and ensure workers have the skills to drive a 21st century economy.
The Governor is also proposing to reduce the fee to establish a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) by more than 90 percent, from $500 to $39 – the lowest in the nation. Formation as an LLC encourages entrepreneurs to invest their time and money into viable business enterprises. Reducing the filing fee to $39 would make it easier for small businesses to start and grow in Illinois.