Labor backs Chicago’s plan for economic growth, jobs

By Pat Barcas
Staff Writer

CHICAGO — Mayor Rahm Emanuel released last week the first draft of a regional economic growth plan that was created to drive Chicago’s leadership in the global economy and integrate labor, businesses, and the public sector.
The plan contains 10 strategies that will help Chicago advance its economy and become a better destination for families and businesses.
“A global city like Chicago needs a clear set of goals, a clear framework for analysis and clear strategies for economic growth and the creation of jobs,” said Mayor Emanuel. “By establishing these, the business community can work in conjunction with labor, the public sector and the non-profit community to execute together and achieve these objectives. This is an important step in that direction and I am looking forward to incorporating the public’s input and comment as we develop this vision for our economic future, enabling the creation of more of the jobs that our city needs.”
The plan presents 10 over-arching strategies that are recommended to drive economic growth and job creation in Chicago through 2020 and beyond.
These strategies include:
—Become a leading hub of advanced manufacturing
—Increase the region’s attractiveness as a center for business services and headquarters
—Enhance our competitive position as a leading transportation and logistics hub
—Make Chicago a premier destination for tourism and entertainment
—Make Chicago a nationally leading exporter
—Develop our workforce in a demand-driven and targeted manner
—Support entrepreneurship and foster innovation in mature and emerging sectors
—Invest to create next-generation infrastructure
—Develop and deploy neighborhood assets to align with regional economic growth; and
—Create an environment in which businesses can flourish.
The draft Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs is the result of a five-month effort by a steering committee of business, labor, civic and community leaders and led by World Business Chicago. Emanuel has directed the organization to oversee management of the plan as it moves through the public domain, and to work in collaboration with area leaders, civic groups, businesses, labor and residents to refine its strategies.
“This important report underscores the importance of creating good jobs, investing in our workforce, and putting a high priority on cooperation and collaboration to spur economic development,” Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle said. “I am excited about the opportunities that these recommendations can foster throughout the region if we continue to work together.”

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