Illinois Senate advances incentive bill to keep ADM headquarters

Reuters News
Posted: Dec 03, 2013 8:33 PM

By Mary Wisniewski

CHICAGO (Reuters) - The Illinois Senate on Tuesday passed a bill that would offer incentives for Archer Daniels Midland Co to keep its global headquarters in Illinois.

ADM has been the dominant corporate presence in the central Illinois city of Decatur for 44 years. Its disclosure in September that it was seeking a new global headquarters shook Decatur and brought other cities, including Chicago, into a contest to land a new corporate nameplate.

The bill would provide tax benefits worth between $20 million and $25 million over the next 15 to 20 years. In exchange, ADM would locate its global headquarters in Chicago, moving 100 jobs there, while also adding 100 jobs a year in Decatur over 5 years.

"It facilitates job creation both in the City of Chicago and a downstate community," said State Sen. Andy Manar, a Democrat, who sponsored the bill. "Those are two areas of the state that typically get pitted against each other."

The Senate voted 39-14 during a one-day session of the state legislature that was called mainly to address pension reform in Illinois. It was not immediately known when the House may vote on the bill.

"Given that the House did not act, we will review our options," said ADM spokeswoman Jackie Anderson. "We expect to make an announcement soon."

ADM had said it sought the incentives because relocating its headquarters within Illinois will cost up to $25 million more than it would cost to move elsewhere.

Chicago was seen as the front-runner from the start, and ADM said in October that it wanted to keep its headquarters in Illinois. Still, company representatives visited other locations, including St. Paul, Minnesota.

Governor Pat Quinn had no comment on the passage, according to a spokesman. He previously has said he is opposed to giving the incentives until state lawmakers addressed the state's pension problems. The General Assembly on Tuesday approved a bill aimed at fixing the state's pension crisis.

(Reporting by Mary Wisniewski and Tom Polansek; Editing by Ken Wills)