Posts Tagged: jobs

Jobs, employers, and the Illinois tax increase

Immediately after Illinois raised its income and corporate tax, tax increase critics like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker predicted that major Illinois businesses would move out of the state (maybe to Wisconsin!). The Chicago Tribune’s Kathy Bergan reports that will not happen with Peoria’s Caterpillar Inc., which employs 22,000 people in its manufacturing plant. Caterpillar’s CEO threatened earlier that the company would earthmove out of the state, but has promised to stay in Illinois after meeting with Gov. Pat Quinn.

It’s not clear Caterpillar was ever serious about moving — or if they were just hoping for Quinn to pass more business-friendly legislation. The governor may do just that with reforming the state’s workers compensation laws. There are no other Illinois companies of note that have threatened to leave since the tax increase.

Will Illinoisans be put to work after September?

Pat Quinn

(Update: A House tax bill that included generating $11 billion in new revenue failed to pass Friday, dimming prospects that Congress will fund “Put Illinois to Work” and like state job creation programs beyond September.)

Illinois has the worst state budget in the nation, but it ranks no. 1 for something less dubious: participation in a national jobs creation program subsidized by $5 billion in stimulus money. The U.S. Congress may determine whether Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn  was smart to dive head first (more…)

Opportunity Knocks

The U.S. Census Bureau Tries to Manage an Unprecedented Hiring Blitz

By Matthew Blake

Heading into March, the current unemployment rate hovers near double digits, with almost fifteen million  Americans jobless. These numbers will be a little less grim this spring – temporarily, at least – when the U.S. Census Bureau goes on a six-week hiring blitz.

The Commerce Department, of which the Census Bureau is part, is touting these job creation statistics: because of the Census, Commerce says, 800,000 jobs will be created, the unemployment rate will go down, and the economy will even grow. Here in Chicago, the possibility of earning $18.25 an hour to ask people how old they are has raised the spirits of some of the city’s unemployed and underemployed. “It’s not really taxing, it’s flexible and the pay is decent,” says Noah Lepawsky, 32, of Chicago, a recent applicant for a census-taker position. There are lingering concerns, though, about whether the Obama administration is up to the task of what Census Bureau Director Robert Groves calls “the largest non-military mobilization in the United States.” (more…)