Existing Illinois Manufacturers Feel Betrayed by State Support and Tax Incentives When Current Businesses Are Struggling
SCHAUMBURG, IL – Nearly 75% of small and mid-sized manufacturers who responded to a recent survey say they oppose the new Chinese-owned Gotion Electric Vehicle battery plant in Manteno that received $536 million in Illinois tax credits and government subsidies to locate in Illinois.
The Technology & Manufacturing Association (TMA) surveyed its members following the news that Governor Pritzker and local governments offered the hefty incentives to lure the Chinese company to Illinois.
TMA asked members for their position regarding the Gotion plant receiving tax credits and 74% responded in opposition. 17% were supportive but concerned about the cost and fairness of the tax credits and subsidies. The remaining 9% were either supportive or had no position.
“Many small and mid-sized manufacturers in the state are looking at the news and wondering where that support for manufacturing has been since Governor Pritzker took office. Bootstrap manufacturers have been pleading for the governor to listen to their concerns with no response, but then he’s willing to open the checkbook for an outside, Chinese-owned company,” said TMA President Patrick Osborne.
“I’ve heard from our members—a lot of them have felt like they’ve been on their own and getting no help from the state. Now, they just feel betrayed.”
The new Gotion plant also has a direct impact on area manufacturers as it is set to create 2,600 jobs in a state and job market that is already struggling to fill skilled manufacturing roles. TMA noted there will now need to be even more of a focus on recruiting, training, and retaining the next generation of skilled workers for American-made manufacturers.
“When our members see the governor using tax dollars to procure a foreign company, especially one with Chinese ties, it troubles them because it drives a bigger wedge between small and large business in this state,” TMA’s Executive Vice President Dennis LaComb said.
“During the announcement of this plant, one elected official said now ‘Illinois is open for business.’ Well, small and mid-sized manufacturers have been open, operating, and employing tens of thousands of Illinoisans for a very long time. They’ve been paying taxes and investing in our state’s economy since its founding, but we can’t get any notice from state leaders—they only seem to care when there’s a big splashy project they can put their names to.”
More TMA member surveys and news can be found at TMANews.com.
About TMA: Founded in 1925, the Technology and Manufacturing Association is an independent trade organization exclusively focused on assisting small and midsize manufacturers by providing a diverse portfolio of benefits and services, including: community, information, training, resources, and advocacy. TMA has nearly 1,000 members representing over 35,000 manufacturing employees and more than 25 million square feet of manufacturing plant.