Kendall County may ask state to ease path to more jobs

The Herald News | Article by Steve Lords

YORKVILLE – Last year, Kendall County did its 10-year survey of residents and learned that people are concerned about one thing more than any other: jobs.

“The key reason people are most likely to leave is a lack of jobs in the county,” said Mike Hoffman, a planner with Teska & Associates who does contract planning work for Kendall County.

It’s called job disconnect among regional planners, and it’s the phenomenon of people having to drive a long way to work. And and as a region, the Chicago area has a high job disconnect.

That leads to longer commutes, higher traffic congestion, longer time spent getting to and from work and a higher cost of transportation. It’s no wonder with time at a premium and gas heading toward $5 a gallon that living closer to work is becoming a more sought-after commodity.

That’s one of the reasons Kendall County Board members want to take a more aggressive approach toward economic development. They see that as a way of retaining residents and making Kendall County a place more people want to move to. Moreover, jobs are the fuel that drives the local economic engine.

Board members are looking to prod the state Legislature to change state law so Kendall can take advantage of some economic development incentives, such as enterprise zones and economic development areas.

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