Sen. Fowler sponsors legislation to spur economic development in the region

Working to pave the way for economic growth in the City of Marion, State Sen. Dale Fowler is sponsoring legislation that would implement an extension to an existing Tax Increment Financial (TIF) District for the area. 

“TIFs were created for the purpose of boosting economic development in a region and bringing opportunities for growth, investment and expansion. These are key components needed to allow a community to thrive,” said Sen. Fowler. “I’m sponsoring this extension because the original TIF enabled companies to get a foot in the door, develop their operations and bring economic opportunities to the area.”

Senate Bill 2303 extends the life of the existing TIF for Williamson County for an additional 12 years, giving businesses such as Crisp Container the opportunity to expand and grow in the future. Crips Container is a manufacturing outfit based out of Marion, producing bottles for businesses like Pepsi MidAmerica.

“Crisp Container has grown and developed in our region in part because of the opportunity created by the original TIF for Williamson County. Now, after all these years, we have yet another chance to bring more growth to our community, giving Crisp Containers and other businesses the ability to further grow and develop,” said Sen. Fowler. “Through this TIF extension, Crisp Container plans to expand their operation further, increasing their manufacturing abilities to create, internally, the base materials needed to make their products.”

Currently, Crisp Container imports the performs needed to manufacture the finished bottle supplies. Through the TIF extension, Crisp Container will be able to create two new manufacturing lines and increase employment within the factory, including new opportunities in transportation and manufacturing.

“Seeing the direct impact that a TIF will have on one of our major Southern Illinois manufacturers is encouraging, but the great thing about economic development is that it doesn’t just impact that one industry,” said Fowler. “This extension will not only allow Crisp to expand, but by doing so, will create additional economic opportunities for rail expansion in Southern Illinois, including increased shipping, delivery and development with our local railroad.”

Senate Bill 2303 passed out of the Senate on Feb. 21 by a vote of 42 to 1, and will now be sent to the House of Representative for further consideration. 

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