economy

 

On this episode of Statewide, we hear how one Illinois town has fared since a major employer left.  Galesburg lost more than 1500 jobs in 2004 when a Maytag plant closed.  

We learn about a service broadcasting sports events specifically for the blind.

And the number of people leaving the state has local governments working to find ways to reverse the trend.  That and more on Statewide.

This week's lineup:

A new report from the Illinois General Assembly suggests concerns about the economy might be overblown.

Chase Cavanaugh / WNIJ

The Chicago Rockford International Airport is touting the number of workers being sought to fill nearly 2,300 permanent and seasonal jobs with tenant companies.

That number is among the largest job-growth and economic-impact opportunities in the Rockford region in years, according to a news release from the airport authority. 

FLICKR USER SPDUCHAMP (CREATIVE COMMONS)

Moody’s Analytics says Illinois is among the Midwest’s “weakest links.”  That’s according to a report prepared for the Illinois Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (the legislature's nonpartisan research group). 

State economist Ed Boss acknowledges that an economic downturn could undo any progress toward a balanced budget. 

“I think even though the forecast that Moody’s gives is for some improvement next year, it’s not much," he said. "It’s still a pretty dismal picture."

Carl Nelson/WNIJ

The cost of driving has skyrocketed over the past week, according to the latest AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report.

The average cost of a gallon of regular unleaded in Illinois has topped the $2.00 mark after the steepest increases of the year. The state average is $2.06, 18 cents higher than last Monday. It's 50 cents higher than a month ago, but still cheaper than it was this time last year, when it was $2.37 a gallon.

Carl Nelson/WNIJ

Gas prices continue to drop all around the state. In Rockford, the cost of a gallon of regular fell more than a nickel since last week, to $2.50.

The state average is $2.60 a gallon. That’s down about 3 and a half cents from last week and 95 cents cheaper than it was a year ago. Drivers are spending 30 cents less per gallon than they were just a month ago.

Illinois Department of Employment Security

Unemployment rates in Illinois metro areas declined for the fifth straight month in August.

Rockford Call Center To Create 500 Jobs

Sep 5, 2014
First Rockford Group

A development company plans to open a call center in Rockford that would create 500 jobs.

The Flash Index for the Illinois economy measured 106 in August, down slightly from July’s reading of 106.2.