Military Economic Development Committee
The Military Economic Development Committee was founded to coordinate the State's activities on and to act as a communications center for issues relating to current and former military bases in the State.
The Military Economic Development Committee's main responsibilities are as outlined by the Illinois General Assembly (20 ILCS 605/605-215):
- Preserve, protect, expand, and attract new military missions, assets, and installations to Illinois.
- Encourage defense related businesses to expand or relocate to Illinois.
- Identify emerging trends and support long-term viability of the military and defense industry in Illinois.
- Assist Illinois communities who have been or could be impacted by Federal Base Realignment and Closure actions or other military realignments.
- Serve as an information clearinghouse by providing military installation information and recommendations to enhance the military value of Illinois defense installations to the Governor, General Assembly, congressional delegation, and State and Federal Government officials.
The first quarterly meeting of 2023 was held on January 24.
- Dr. Teresa Glaze presented on the Governor’s Challenge, a national initiative to prevent suicide among service members, veterans, and their families. MEDC members discussed ways to support the Governor’s Challenge and address pressing issues such as suicidal ideation and drug overdoses.
- The Illinois Governor's Challenge has a free training portal to teach individuals best practices for suicide prevention and ways to support the military community. The goal is to train 70,000 Illinois residents.
- The council is working on promoting employment opportunities for military spouses and strengthening economic development around military installations.
The second quarterly meeting of 2023 was held on April 11.
- SFC Jide Gamu presented on Soldier for Life, a U.S. Army program that promotes policies to support soldiers, veterans, and military families. He discussed strategies for success in the Midwest and possibilities for collaboration with MEDC.
- Ed Weilbacher from the Kaskaskia Regional Port District presented updates on the proposed Kaskaskia Jet Fuel Pipeline. This pipeline would provide Scott Air Force Base with a cost-effective fuel supply line and the ability to purchase fuel from multiple suppliers.