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January 10th , 2018
The Regional Link
Winter 2018 Edition

Clay, Effingham, Fayette, Jasper and Marion Counties
Rethinking Local Economic Development...Again
In 1990, Michael Porter, a Harvard University Business School Professor, published  The Competitive Advantage of Nations, an examination of how prosperity is created and maintained in the modern global economy. This book shaped how national policy was established across the world. Despite its age, this publication is a must read for any local government looking to create wealth and grow a sustainable local economy for the future.

While this well-known work did create a major shift in economic development across the world, it has not found its way into the hands of a majority of rural communities, it seems. Rather than discuss each and every concept Porter puts forth in this publication, there are two basic concepts in particular that should "hit home" for many rural local government entities striving to increase the economic well-being of their community.

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SCIRPDC Planning Services
I want to take the time to invite you to peruse through the multiple grants and opportunities that we provide as your region's planning commission. Whether it be municipal public safety equipment, economic development or public infrastructure projects, we are likely to to be aware of grant opportunities that may be of use to you and your community. You may view our  Grant Service Catalog for grants that may fit your specific needs, but we also would like to ask you give us a call because the catalog is not necessarily all inclusive.

We also provide a wide range of loan programs, GIS services, data provision, and other planning related services that can assist your day to day work to better the life of your neighbors, your community and the entire region. You can find all of this information by looking through our website at

Please feel free to contact us if projects arise that you believe could require some helpful guidance or additional funding.
What's dragging down the Illinois Economy?
Illinois is home to a well-documented people problem. The state's population has been shrinking for four consecutive years, and its labor force is declining as well. At the same time, Illinois' economy is lagging the nation in terms of growth.

Analyzing the component parts of economic growth shows how these two unfortunate realities are connected. And how state and local tax hikes in Illinois are making things worse.

Illinois' slow growth

Analyzing economic growth in Illinois requires deconstructing the state's growth in real gross domestic product into its primary contributions: labor inputs and labor productivity. The production process transforms labor, capital and technology into output (real GDP). That means if Illinoisans work fewer hours, or more Illinoisans leave the state or retire earlier over time, labor input in the production process will grow more slowly or even shrink. Declining labor input can easily cancel out any improvement in productivity growth...

South Central Illinois Regional Planning & Development Commission
P: (618) 548-4234 /   F: (618) 548-4236   

120 S. Delmar Avenue  /  Suite A /  Salem, Illinois /  62881-2000

South Central Illinois Regional Planning & Development Commission is an Equal Opportunity Lender and Provider