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Monday, March 27, 2023
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Pritzker celebrates new jobs in southern Illinois




MARION – In a state that's among the highest in the nation losing residents on an annual basis, the governor of Illinois celebrated announcing several hundred new jobs coming to southern Illinois. 

Having begun the process of location shopping two years ago – before Pritzker became governor – he joined Centene and IlliniCare Health at their new Carbondale Service Center this week.

“This 80,000-square foot facility will bring 350 new jobs to southern Illinois. That’s a direct investment in this community that will create opportunity for so many working families,” said Gov. JB Pritzker. “I will be your partner as we work to ensure communities across southern Illinois and across our state get the care they deserve and the investment they need to thrive.”
“Two years ago Centene began its search for a location for a new service center. We selected Carbondale to aid in its economic development by bringing jobs to its residents and specifically to create opportunities for young people to enter the workforce and therefore remain in the region,” said Leslie Naamon, CEO of IlliniCare Health. “We have many instrumental partners who have enabled our local economic, civic, healthcare and educational involvement—all of which contribute to an enriched environment empowering healthier decisions that create more vibrant families and communities.”

After the ribbon-cutting in Carbondale, the governor attended the opening of a new taxpayer-funded road in nearby Marion. He joined Marion Mayor Mike Absher and Pepsi MidAmerica at a ribbon cutting and community dedication of Halfway Road. The newly constructed road has allowed Pepsi MidAmerica to expand operations and bring 50 new jobs to Marion.
“Today we’re celebrating the opening of Halfway Road, which wouldn’t be possible without the hardworking men and women who built it,” said Gov. JB Pritzker. “This project has been 20 years in the making, and it will drive economic growth for decades to come. Right here and right now, Pepsi MidAmerica is expanding its production with new equipment and adding 50 new jobs in Marion. This is proof that investing in infrastructure unlocks so much potential in our communities.”
“We are very excited about the new roadway improvements and the benefits this will have for our community,” said John Rains, Vice Chairman at Pepsi MidAmerica. “This new roadway will allow for safer travel to the Marion High School as well as for the residents that reside in the southern portion of our community. This roadway improvement also provides for the expansion of the production and distribution at Pepsi MidAmerica. The company will be adding 50 new jobs as well as investing over 2.5 million dollars in their expanded distribution.”

Marion Mike Absher boasted the need for infrastructure investment in Illinois. 
“After years of hard work, I’m thrilled that Halfway Road is open to the public and that longtime business partner Pepsi MidAmerica continues its extraordinary investment in Marion,” said Marion Mayor Mike Absher. “Infrastructure investment opens communities up to opportunity and spurs economic development, which is something our governor deeply understands. I’m honored that Governor Pritzker joined us for this important milestone and that he is fighting for a capital bill to rebuild our state. He’s making southern Illinois a priority, and we’re here to support him.”



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  1. Great News. Now it is time to reduce the public sector in Illinois.
    Reduce taxes for all people.
    Reduce the public sector cost by 10 percent in all of the state.
    Love Saves Lives
    Carl Lambrecht