Joint statement from IDES, Workforce Investment Board and City

February 22, 2013 03:56 PM
Joint Statement By:
Jay Rowell, Director, Illinois Department of Employment Security
Sal Garza, Mayor, City of Galesburg
Blanche Shoup, Director, Workforce Investment Board

Galesburg, IL (February 22, 2013) The economic security of the Galesburg area and our state is tied to economic growth.
Economic growth is a result of an encouraging business environment and a ready workforce. An encouraging business environment is a complex issue that involves progress at the global, national and state levels. Furthermore, individual communities, like Galesburg, have been contending with and navigating through these significant challenges that impact local economies through every economic development project that has been successfully realized.
Federal budget cuts have required IDES to make difficult decisions, including the closing of 15 offices throughout the state. Five have been in Chicago. One will be in Galesburg. That decision is unlikely to change because federal funding cuts are unlikely to be restored.
Employment services, however, are key to a ready workforce and a growing economy. As such, IDES is committed to working with local partners to identifying new ways to develop the workforce in the Galesburg area.
In the coming months, IDES will work with local leaders in Galesburg, especially Mayor Salvador Garza and Workforce Investment Director Blanche Shoup, to determine the best way to accomplish this mutual goal.
IDES also is committed to working with leaders in organized labor to determine the most appropriate path. This path undoubtedly must continue to acknowledge the federal funding reality that faces IDES and other state workforce agencies while at the same time respects the sacrifices IDES has asked of its workforce within the labor agreement.
The appropriate use of more internet-based and electronic services has proven to be a productive and cost-effective tool. Nearly 200,000 individuals and businesses used last year, the IDES' internet-based help wanted site that brings together employees ready to work with employers ready to hire. This approach respects taxpayers' dollars and will help improve the economic security of residents in the Galesburg area and our entire state.


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