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Permit No. 29 Champaign, IL

Presorted Standard US Postage

C h a m pa i g n C o u n t y ’ s t ru s t e d

b u s i n e s s - to - b u s i n e s s p u b l i c at i o n

for

PAID

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20 years

CONNECTION

Volume 24 | Issue 4

C O M M E R C E

JULY / AUGUST 2017

more

A PUBLICATION OF THE CHAMPAIGN COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


Experience the advantages of

SBA Financing. First Mid has a long-standing relationship with the SBA and is consistently one of the top providers of SBA 7(a) loans in Illinois.* These loans have provided area small businesses with funding for:

• • • •

Business expansion, acquisition or refinancing Equipment or machinery purchases Inventory purchases Building acquisition, construction or remodeling

First Mid is a Certified Lender and Express Lender with the SBA. We can help qualifying businesses take advantage of these flexible SBA terms: • • • •

Up to a 7-year loan amortization on working capital Up to a 10-year loan amortization on equipment and machinery Up to a 25-year loan amortization on commercial real estate Up to a 20-year fixed interest rate on certain eligible projects

• Up to 90% project financing

2014 - 2015 - 2016 - 2017 FIRST MID HAS BEEN RECOGNIZED BY THE ILLINOIS SBA FOUR YEARS IN A ROW FOR OUR

COMMITMENT TO SMALL BUSINESS! The U.S. Small Business Administration offers programs to assist entrepreneurs with starting, managing, and growing their business. SBA loans often include lower down payments and longer repayment terms than conventional loans, enabling small businesses to keep their cash flow for operational expenses and spend less on debt repayment.

To get started on your own SBA Loan, contact our local First Mid lenders: Mike Krueger

Community President Commercial Lending 2229 S. Neil Street • Champaign 359-9837 mkrueger@firstmid.com

Mitch Swim

Regional President Commercial Lending 2229 S. Neil Street • Champaign 359-9837 mswim@firstmid.com

To learn more about First Mid or to see a complete list of locations, visit us online.

FIRSTMID.COM

Member FDIC • Equal Opportunity Lender *Based on Illinois SBA Lender Performance Reports and the number of closed SBA 7(a) loans.

Champaign County Banking Centers: Champaign • 2229 South Neil • 359-9837 Champaign • 913 West Marketview • 378-8023 Urbana • 601 South Vine • 367-8451 Mahomet • 502 East Oak • 318-3750


303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809 www.champaigncounty.org

FY17 TOP INVESTORS TOP INVESTORS GOLD Busey Carle SILVER BankChampaign, N.A. First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign BRONZE A & R Mechanical Contractors Amdocs Christie Clinic Heartland Bank & Trust Midland States Bank Presence Covenant Medical Center RSM US LLP

IN-KIND CONTRIBUTORS CHAIRMAN’S CIRCLE Illini Radio Group - MIX 94.5, WIXY 100.3, Rewind 92.5, WYXY Classic 99.1, True Oldies 97.9, Extra 92.1, Hits 99.7 Stevie Jay Broadcasting - Q96-96.1FM, US105.9, Sunny 95.3 & ESPN 93.5 WCIA-TV / WCIX-49 PRESIDENT’S CIRCLE NewsTalk 1400 WDWS, Lite Rock 97.5 WHMS, Classic Hits 107.9 WKIO BUSINESS’S CIRCLE FOX, ABC and CW - TV

150 PERCENT CLUB Awards, Ltd. Blossom Basket Florist Dish Passionate Cuisine Hyatt Place LongHorn Steakhouse Thomas, Mamer & Haughey, LLP TrophyTime W.K. Cooper II Asset Management Corporation

CHAMBER STAFF Laura Weis President & CEO LauraW@champaigncounty.org Mindy Cain Director of Workforce Readiness & Member Relations MindyC@champaigncounty.org

Caryn Isenhower Accounts Receivable & Office Administrator Caryni@champaigncounty.org Stephanie McCullough Director of First Impressions StephanieM@champaigncounty.org

Dustin Haake Membership Sales Director DustinH@champaigncounty.org

Lindsay Quick Graphic Design and Marketing Director LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org

Garret Hill Public Policy Director GarretH@champaigncounty.org

Ariel Short Events & Programs Manager ArielS@champaigncounty.org

BOARD OF DIRECTORS BOARD OFFICERS Jeffrey Baker

Jeff Baker Company

Chip Craddock Clark Dietz, Inc.

Kyle Emkes

Dodd & Maatuka

David Farrar

Illinois American Water

Gary Hackler

WCIA - TV / WCIX 49

Zachary Hillard Busey

R.J. Hynds English Brothers Company

Tonya Horn Rogards

Susan Jepsen

Reynolds Towing Service, Inc.

Pradeep Khanna

Chuck McReaken

Chair, TSM Ventures, Inc.

Dr. Jared Rogers

University of Illinois

First Vice Chair Presence Covenant Medical Center

Kurt Lenschow

Mike Estes

State Farm

Jim Lyons

Birkey’s Farm Store

Justin Overstreet

Second Vice Chair Fisher National Bank

Dan Kirby

Treasurer, CliftonLarsonAllen

Martin, Hood, Friese & Associates, LLC

Becky Preston

Rod Roberts

Laura Weis

Thunderstruck Design

Julianna Sellett

Past Chair, Midland States Bank

Secretary, Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

Carle

FINANCIAL SERVICES Provided by CliftonLarsonAllen

All information contained within this publication is property of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce and cannot be reproduced without prior expressed or written consent. This publication contains paid advertising; the opinions expressed in those advertisements do not reflect the views of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce. For advertising information, contact the Chamber at 217.359.1791.


WELCOME TO THE CHAMBER >> members who joined between May 1, 2017 and June 30, 2017 Caribbean Grill

Complete Nutrition + Smoothies

Come enjoy a “Taste of Paradise”! Caribbean Grill is a local, fast-casual restaurant serving up authentic island style scratch-made comfort food. If you’ve been to the islands or simply enjoy a fresh and satisfying meal for the soul, you’ll love the aromatic flavors of Caribbean Grill. Caribbean Grill’s signature feature is the slow roasted and savory Jamaican Jerk Chicken (served with a side of spicy jerk sauce, rice n’ peas, and a slice of fried plantain). Other customer favorites include the baked mac n’ cheese, curry chicken and beef oxtails. For a complete taste of paradise, finish your meal with a slice of delicious homemade pineapple rum cake. Caribbean Grill also provides vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan options.

Complete Nutrition + Smoothies in Champaign helps people reach their sports nutrition, weight management, and general health goals. Our success coaches will provide you with the proper tools such as BodyComp, meal plans, exercise tips and smoothies to keep you on the path of success. Not to mention they’ll keep you motivated and educated every step of the way during your journey. Complete Nutrition + Smoothies Champaign is ready to set you up for success.

2135 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820-7593 217.960.5375 www.caribbeangrill.net Restaurants

1903 N. Neil St., Ste. F Champaign, IL 61820-7819 217.355.1447 www.completenutrition.com Nutrition Consultants

FBM Gypsum Supply celebrated their opening with a ribbon cutting on May 25.

Heyl Royster Voelker & Allen, P.C. celebrated their new location with a ribbon cutting on May 31.

Congratulations to Caribbean Grill on the grand opening of their restaurant. They celebrated with a ribbon cutting on May 30.

Congratulations to Fertilizer Dealer Supply, Inc. for celebrating their 50th anniversary.


Four Courses Catering

2135 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820-7593 217.960.5373 www.fourcoursescatering.com Caterers At Four Courses Catering (formerly CG Signature Events), we believe that “Exceptional is in the details.” This drives our mission to provide excellent fare and exceptional service for every client, no matter the occasion. From box lunches and BBQ tailgates to corporate and social events, Four Courses Catering offers the perfect catering solution. Visit our website to view our menus, read more of our story and place an order for your next event.

Sidney Dairy Barn celebrated the opening of their new “Moo Thru” with a ribbon cutting on June 6.

MobileLink Cricket Wireless - Carriage Center 2003 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.607.2163 www.cricketwireless.com Cellular Telephone Service

MobileLink Cricket Wireless - Champaign 7 Convenience Center Rd. Champaign, IL 61822-2750 217.355.0184 www.cricketwireless.com Cellular Telephone Service

Congratulations to Walmart Urbana for the completion of their Walmart Academy. They celebrated with a ribbon cutting on June 6.

MobileLink was originally founded in Houston, Texas with three locations, and with dedication and hard work, the company continued its growth initially in Texas and eventually branching out to neighboring states. Currently, Mobilelink operates nationwide with over 250 locations and is the largest authorized retailer for Cricket wireless. MobileLink continues to grow the footprint into more rural areas, giving customers a choice of a value product with exceptional financial value.

Pie’s The Limit

2510 Village Green Pl. Champaign, IL 61822-7675 217.607.5263 www.piesthelimit.com Restaurant Pie’s The Limit specializes in providing a fast dining option without sacrificing freshness or quality. Our 11” pizzas are made to order by a crew member while the guest directs what kind of sauce, cheese and toppings they would like. The options are limitless and it’s all for one price. Customers can build a pizza, pasta or a salad with unlimited toppings for $7.99! We bake our pizzas and pastas in our 700 degree rotating deck oven and can have it to you in just minutes. Online and call-in orders for carry out are accepted, but we’d rather you sit in our dining room and enjoy your pizza right out of the oven!

Prairie State Bank & Trust celebrated the opening of their new location with a ribbon cutting on June 13.

Salad Meister

601 S. Sixth St., Ste. 104 Champaign, IL 61820 1714 217.840.9456 www.saladmeister.com Restaurants At Salad Meister, quality is our passion. We use only the finest, freshest, organic ingredients. It is a healthy alternate for those who want the convenience of fast-food, but want the quality ingredients of a homemade salad or wrap. We use the mantra ‘guilt-free food’ because our food is healthy, made by a properly paid staff and in containers that are biodegradable. We offer fresh made salads, wraps and soups and offer pickup or delivery through our Salad Meister App. We also provide party pans and catering for large groups.


Walmart Savoy celebrated the opening of their new grocery pickup service with a ribbon cutting on June 20.

HealthSource Chiropractic of Champaign celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on July 13.

Cricket Wireless celebrated the opening of their new location on Neil St. in Champaign on July 13.

Next Chapter Properties celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on July 25.

You need a bank that’s local, experienced and invested in central Illinois

Jan Miller Bobbie Butler Dan Marker Steve Tock Toni Delporte Chuck Eyman Kirk Harney

Three out of three isn’t bad.

HICKORYPOINTBANK.COM


Stay Connected

Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

Make time for your health Forget sorting through today’s headlines. Carle delivers stories that matter. Subscribe today. newsroom.carle.org

@ccountychamber

Fall

Hawthorn Suites

101 Trade Center Dr., Champaign, IL 61820 7:30 - 9:00 a.m.

Breakfast Series September 14:

Cost to attend for members is $19 for a single breakfast or $50 for the entire series. The price for non-members is $39 per breakfast.

October 12:

November 9:

Is Your Business a Digital Disaster? Presented by:

University of Illinois Fighting Illini Men’s Basketball Coach

Save the Date Stay Tuned for Speaker Annoucement

Jody Jankovsky,

Founder and Managing Member, Black|Line Consulting

Brad Underwood


Back to School: By the Numbers Infographic reprinted from www.bazaarvoice.com


contracted carrier for the Fighting Illini and Marching Illini. Four of their buses have been painted orange and blue, with Fighting Illini branding next to Peoria Charter’s logo and name.

Daily Schedule to Chicago Company History

Peoria Charter was founded in 1941, when Walt Winkler sold his family car and took a loan from his sister’s chicken egg farm to purchase his first bus. His goal was to aide in solving the gas crisis for his friends and family needing transportation to their jobs at the Caterpillar factories in Peoria. The companies’ formula of customer service, quality equipment and well-trained drivers has allowed this four-generation family business to grow into one of the largest bus companies in the Midwest. Today, they have 64 pieces of luxury equipment, over 140 employees and three locations in Peoria, Normal and Urbana. In 2016, Peoria Charter’s buses traveled 3.8 million miles, which is the equivalent to 152 trips around the earth. Each year more than 500,000 passengers board Peoria Charter’s buses to travel to places such as Chicago, Washington D.C., New York, Canada, Colorado and many more destinations across North America.

Urbana Facility

Peoria Charter opened a location in Urbana, IL in 2006. The facility doubled in size after an expansion was made to the building in 2012. The facility currently operates between 20-25 charter coaches. Just recently, Peoria Charter purchased the office building next door to allow for more growth. Since moving to the Urbana-Champaign area, Peoria Charter has created 50 new jobs ranging from full-time technicians to parttime drivers and cleaning crew. Peoria Charter has a close partnership with the University of Illinois. They have been the Universities’ preferred choice for bus transportation for nearly ten years. Peoria Charter is the

Recently, Peoria Charter announced that they will now be offering ten daily shuttles between Champaign and Chicago. Every two hours, from 3:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., buses will depart from spots around Champaign and drop off at destinations such as O’Hare Airport, Midway Airport, Union Station and Schaumburg, IL. The daily shuttle has grown very rapidly in recent history. There has been a 419 percent increase in ridership since 2013. In the past year, Peoria Charter’s daily schedule has surpassed the ridership at Willard Airport by transporting more than 130,000 passengers over 1.2 million miles without local, state or federal funding. According to director of operations James Wang, “We are transporting more passengers than ever before in company history. I credit the increase in ridership to our friendly and professional drivers. They come in every day, not just looking to transport passengers, but really looking to brighten someone’s day. Their hard work, along with our 24-Hour Call Center Representatives, has set us apart from all other transportation methods to Chicago.”

Best Kept Secret

Beyond renting charter buses and selling tickets on their daily schedule to Chicago, most people are not aware that Peoria Charter is also a full-service travel agency, known as Peoria Charter Travel. The travel agency has locations in Peoria and Normal, and offers service to and from anywhere in the world. Peoria Charter travel books honeymoons, business travel, international travel, cruises, airline tickets and so much more. Peoria Charter even offers free transportation on one of their ten daily shuttles to O’Hare or Midway Airport when an airline ticket is booked through their agents.


Why Choose Peoria Charter? Daily Schedule to Chicago - 10 TIMES, EVERYDAY! Purchase a seat on a daily shuttle. Prices starting at $31 one-way 1

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45 East University

South of Ice Arena Across from Cocomero 919 W. Illinois St Toys “R” Us

2317 75th Street

Departure Terminals Parking Lot C

Corner of Jackson & Canal Domestic (Terminal 2)

International (Terminal 5) Parking Lot D1-D3

I thought I'd share my compete satisfaction with your entire company and hope those involved hear of our thanks and appreciation as well as those that are in high ranks of the company.

Impress your guests and collegues...

Charter a Private Motorcoach #1 Charter Bus Company in Champaign County!

• Family-owned and operated in Central Illinois since 1941. • 64 Units Available: 55 Passenger Coaches, 38 Passenger Coaches, 20 Passenger Executive Minibuses • All equipment is fully insured, licensed, and operated by a professional driver. • Amenities include: DVD Player / TVs, 110V Outlets, P.A. system, restroom in coaches, underneath storage bays, reclining seats & overhead storage. WiFi is available. • Our team consists of 140 employees dedicated to successful transportation.

REQUEST A QUOTE:

Go to PeoriaCharter.com Click on “Quick Quote” then “ONLINE REQUEST” Complete the form and expect a Quote within 24 hours.

#1 Preferred carrier of University of Illinois Fighting Illini

FREE Ride to O’Hare, when you book your flight with us

peoriachartertravel.com

PEORIA CHARTER

TRAVEL

For all your travel needs

4.1 / 5

www.peoriacharter.com • (800) 448-0572 • 24/7 Call Center


MEMBER ACCOLADES & NEWS FEHR GRAHAM Fehr Graham, a leading Midwest engineering and environmental firm with ten locations in Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin announced it has hired Roland White as project manager in its Champaign office. White brings to the firm an extensive background in transportation and civil engineering, which includes 25 years of experience in private consulting, municipal engineering and higher education infrastructure management. Prior to joining the Fehr Graham team, he was a civil engineer with the University of Illinois and a city engineer with the City of Champaign. HABITAT FOR HUMANITY OF CHAMPAIGN COUNTY, DON MOYER BOYS & GIRLS CLUB, AND THE EASTERN ILLINOIS FOODBANK The Yahoo Employee Foundation (YEF) awarded nearly a million dollars in grant money to three local not-for profits at a brief ceremony on Wednesday July 12. Habitat for Humanity of Champaign County, Don Moyer Boys & Girls Club and the Eastern Illinois Foodbank each received checks for $320,000 from YEF based on the strong partnerships and high program impact from previous YEF funding. Through YEF, Yahoo employees have been able to champion important causes and impact organizations around the world. Since 2000, YEF awarded over $35 million through more than 1,200 grants to organizations chosen by Yahoo employees. With the acquisition of Yahoo by Verizon, YEF will be distributing the balance of remaining funds, including the three local organizations selected by their effective use of YEF funding in previous funding cycles. THE INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY OF ARBORICULTURE ISA announces the selection of Caitlyn Pollihan as its new Executive Director. Pollihan, who transitioned to executive director on July 5, brings to ISA a background in Forestry Leadership and Association Management.

Caitlyn Pollihan has served as the Executive Director of the Council of Western State Foresters (CWSF) and the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition (WFLC) since 2009. In this role, she facilitated the development of the organization’s strategic goals and agendas and worked with members and CWSF/WFLC staff to ensure the organization’s success. Prior to this role, Caitlyn was the CWSF/WFLC Governmental Affairs Director where she was instrumental in the passage of key legislation and educating CWSF and WFLC members on legislative proposals and national policy with western implications. KRANNERT CENTER National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects across the country in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. Included in this announcement was an Art Works award of $20,000 to Krannert Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to sustain and expand its presentation of high-quality, diverse artistry; create residencies and engagement opportunities; and explore the impact of the arts for K-12 students, families, artists and partners. The NEA received 1,728 Art Works applications and will make 1,029 grants ranging from $10,000 to $100,000. WOODSPRING SUITES WoodSpring Suites Champaign/Urbana is pleased to announce Julie Miller as the newly appointed General Manager. Julie has a focused career in hospitality with more than ten years of experience in leadership and operations. Julie is excited to work with the knowledgeable staff on hand and is looking to grow her team by developing hospitality focused career seekers. HEARTLAND BANK AND TRUST COMPANY Heartland Bank and Trust Company announces that Chad Sieben has joined the bank and will serve as Vice PresidentCommercial Lending in the Champaign-Urbana


area. Based out of the Champaign location at 1101 W. Windsor Road, Sieben is experienced in the financial industry with over ten years in retail banking, small business lending, and commercial lending. C-U AT HOME C-U at Home is excited to announce that Rob Dalhaus III stepped into the role of executive director on August 1, 2017. He has been serving as the managing director for the last eleven months through leading staff, managing dayto-day operations and helping us better utilize community resources. “Our C-U at Home team is blessed to have Rob fill this role and continue the legacy that God started here more than six years ago,” said Melany Jackson, founder and current executive director. Before joining the team, Rob worked as the supervisor at the TIMES Center, with previous experience as a crisis clinician. Rob, his wife Jess, and their two children are all natives of St. Joseph. PRESENCE COVENANT MEDICAL CENTER Congratulations to Presence Covenant Medical Center for receiving international recognition as a Baby-Friendly designated birth facility by Baby-Friendly USA. FIRST MID-ILLINOIS BANK & TRUST Brad Beesley, Executive Vice President, Trust and Wealth Management with First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust, has been named one of Bank Investment Consultant’s Top 25 Program Managers, ranking 12th in the nation. Beesley is one of nine investment program managers associated with Raymond James that made the prestigious list of 25, compiled annually by Bank Investment Consultant. Factors considered in this year’s ranking were the team’s total assets under management, growth in team annual production, growth in team assets, average production per advisor, and number of advisors under the managers’ direct supervision. His office is located at 1317 Charleston Avenue in Mattoon (1-800-546-5721), where Beesley serves as Raymond James Branch Manager and Registered Principal.

Elisha Walters has been promoted to vice president, regional deposit manager. She began her career with First Mid in 2000 as a customer service representative moving into the role of teller supervisor and later retail lending officer before becoming regional deposit manager in 2014. The bank was also named 2016 Central/ Southern Illinois Community Bank of the Year Award by the U.S. Small Business Administration. This award is presented to the community bank with the best overall performance record for lending to small businesses in Illinois. The Small Business Administration (SBA) is a United States government agency that provides support to entrepreneurs and small businesses. Have news to share with the local business community? Tell us about it and get featured in the Chamber’s next Commerce Connection. Email Lindsay Quick with your news, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org, or submit the news via our website: http://champaigncounty.org/ membership/member_accolades.aspx

HELP US WELCOME

Dustin Haake Membership Sales Director

Dustin graduated from Elmhurst College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing Management and has a passion for helping others. He enjoys talking to individuals and building relationships both professionally through business and personally. Dustin is excited to meet existing and future Chamber members to help them become and stay successful as a business. He will put to use his background, skills and experience to create an ever-growing Champaign County Chamber of Commerce. Dustin may be reached at DustinH@champaigncounty.org or by calling 217.359.1791.


transportation drives communities forward Written by Lindsay Quick Transportation is a vital part of most peoples everday lives. Whether going to work or school, out to run errands or on a family vacation, people need to be able to get around. Our state and our local community both play important roles in tranportation on a national level. Chicago has been the hub of our nation’s railroad system for more than a hundred years. In fact, Chicago is the world’s third busiest inter-modal hub surpassed by only Hong Kong and Singapore. Although some people do not give much thought as to how they are going to get from point A to point B, others who rely primarily on public tranportation find that accesibility is extremely important. On a local level, the people of the ChampaignUrbana communtiy have access to a number of different modes of transportation making daily commutes and travel possible. The Champaign Urbana Mass Transit District (CUMTD) provides over 12 million passenger trips each year, yet according to Andrew Johnson, chief operating officer at CUMTD, “there is still a constant demand for improved public transportation frequency and coverage.” The tranportation industry, like many others, feels the effects of the economy at all levels. Johnson adds, “public tranportation needs

consistent and reliable long term funding in order to be sustainable and successful.” On Amtrak’s Illini/Saluki (CHI-CDL) line, ridership has grown over the past few years. From FY07 to FY14 ridership grew by 41.65 percent. This increase in ridership on the I-57 corridor has made it the third most traveled in the State of Illinois. Those at the University of Illinois Willard Airport deal with many of the same issues while trying to connect the people of the Champaign Urbana community to destinations all over the world. In order to offer more routes and better serve the community, Willard Airport recently added services from United Airlines. The airport continuously strives to make air transportation as affordable and accessible as possible.

“Transportation is a key component to the economic viability of our region. Without reliable, direct access to all modes of tranportation our community would find it difficult to attract new business, retain talented employees and attract investors to the community.” - Gene Cossey, Executive Director, University of Illinois Willard Airport


Communities with strong transportation resources have proven to thrive. Whether it be the high volume of people they serve day to day or the amount of jobs and money that they bring to the communities they exist in, it is clear the industry is integral to the success of the local economy. Amtrak also plays an important role in connecting our community to others all over the nation. It’s passenger rail service is bigger than just the Champaign-Urbana community. The City of New Orleans line, which spans the U.S. from New Orleans to Chicago passing through Champaign-Urbana on the way has a history of being popular and continues to see increase in ridership from year to year. Efficient transportation has and will always be one of the nations most critical needs. Every single day people rely on cars, trains, bicycles, buses, airplanes and other modes of transportation to get from place to place. Johnson adds, “many use transportation services yet everyone needs it.” Whether a person uses a transportation service every day or once a year, it is a necessary and important part of every community. Although the industry itself is always changing and improvements must constantly be made in order to stay relevant, those who work in it find it to be incredibly rewarding. Anyone involved in the transportation industry is directly serving the community every single day. It is not enough for these businesses to simply exist. In order to actually make a difference, their primary focus must be on providing quality service to those who need it. According to Johnson, for CUMTD that means, “using technology to make service safer and more reliable - customers can now track their buses in real time.” Of course service and improvements are going to look different for each type of transportation business, but one constant remains the same: giving customers the best experience possible.

HD Brown, owner and general manager of Starr Limousines, knows that service means going above and beyond to take care of customers: “We’ve driven a group to Nebraska for a three-day farm tour and a single person to Philadelphia during a hurricane due to a canceled flight - we will take people anywhere they need to go.” A successful transportation business relies completely on the customers they serve. If the customers are not happy, they will choose a different service. Brown adds, “It’s always satisfying being a part of a happy day or occasion for our customers. They are the reason we’re in business.” Regardless of the mode of transportation, businesses in the industry are always striving to find new and innovative ways to serve the Champaign-Urbana community better. Quality is often what sets businesses transportation apart. It is important that people not only have the ability to get where they want to go, but that they also enjoy their trip.

MEET OUR EXPERTS: Champaign Urbana Mass Transit District

Andrew Johnson Chief Operating Advisor www.cumtd.com 217.384.8188

Starr Limousine

H.D. Brown Owner & General Manager www.starrlimos.com 217.356.9999

University of Illinois Willard Airport Gene Cossey Executive Director www.flycmi.com 217.244.8644

Thank you to all members that participated as experts and for the work you do to better our local workforce and community.


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PUBLIC POLICY UPDATE Fiscal year 2017 ended June 30 without a budget in place for the State of Illinois. Legislators stayed in Springfield after the deadline in order to negotiate or force through a package to keep state finances afloat. Elected officials were facing a mountain of pressure, everyday citizens demanding a budget, bond agencies threatening junk bond status and a federal judge ruling the state must pay an extra $586 million per month to pay back medical bills. With state finances on the brink of collapse, lawmakers came together to pass a budget. Afterward, Fitch Ratings issued a press release applauding Illinois’ progress on a budget avoiding a credit downgrade to junk bond status for the time being. After the package passed both the House of Representatives and the Senate, Governor Rauner vetoed the entire package that includes an income tax increase and a corporate tax increase bringing those rates to 4.95 percent and 7 percent, respectively. The governor’s veto proved to be more procedural than a continuation of this two-year plus impasse. The Senate immediately voted to ride the veto with the same expected in the House. The State of Illinois finally has a budget, albeit at a very high ($5 billion) cost. The State passed a budget but not all the details that were passed in the agreement were sorted out. While the budget includes funding for K-12 education, there is a clause written in the budget stating funding is only allocated if the state passes an “evidence-based model” for changing the school funding formula. Only two such proposals exist. Senate Bill 1 passed both the House and the Senate. A competing proposal introduced by State Senator Jason Barickman would also fit the “evidence-based model” for school funding, but has not received a hearing in the Illinois General Assembly. This would mean that either Governor Rauner signs Senate Bill 1, or the House and Senate come back for a special session to vote on Senator Barickman’s proposal, or schools will not receive funding and risk not opening this fall.

Governor Rauner has publicly stated he does not support Senate Bill 1, calling it a “Chicago bail-out.” Governor Rauner took action on his promise by issuing an amendatory veto of Senate Bill 1. An amendatory veto allows the governor to amend legislation that has been sent to his desk. In order for the new language to be accepted, the House and Senate have to uphold the veto. Both houses could also choose to override the veto and pass the original bill into law. Both votes would require super-majorities. If the veto is neither accepted or overridden, the entire bill is dead. The part of the bill Governor Rauner vetoed would send additional funding to Chicago Public Schools in the form of a block grant and pension payment assistance. House Republican Leader Jim Durkin has stated that Republicans are unified in the governor’s position and will not vote to override. While the Republicans are unified in support of the governor’s veto, Senate Democrats have said their analysis shows if the General Assembly accepts the governors’ amendatory veto, a $221 million hole will be created in the state’s budget. Fitch has warned that school districts are at a risk of credit downgrades without state appropriations. Without either an override or accepting the veto, local school districts would not receive their funding that is supposed to begin on August 16. As of right now, no school districts have stated they will not be able to open on time if funding is not received, however, there is no way of knowing when an individual school district would run out of reserves and would be forced to shut their doors.


Cham ber Sto re Mailing Labels

An exclusive benefit of Chamber membership, we sell mailing labels containing the names and addresses of Chamber member businesses for the purpose of member-to-member communication. Target the local business community. Two lists are available for purchase:

e-Connection

Long list (approx. 2,400 names and businesses): $175 Short list (approx. 1,000 names and businesses): $125

Our electronic newsletter is sent to nearly 2,000 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County each week. Sponsor an e-Connection and get your business seen by thousands.

Contact Caryn Isenhower to order, Caryni@champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Header sponsorship (one wk.): $100

Email Blast Advertisement Do you have a new product, service or information you would like to share with our entire Chamber membership? Take advantage of this exclusive offer to send broadcast emails to our entire nearly 2,000 email list. Email Blast Advertisement: $500 Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Commerce Connection

This is a bi-monthly publication that is distributed to over 2,400 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County. Content varies, but is always relevant to local business. There are a variety of ad sizes available. Ads start at only $90. Ask about the exclusive cover package that allows your business to gain exposure before the reader even opens the publication. Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Email Footer Sponsorship

For a great price, place an ad in every email that is sent out of the Chamber office. That’s an average of over 12,000 emails per week. The best part? Link the footer wherever you would like. Footer (one wk.): $75 (Add footer to the e-Connection for an additional $50.) Contact Lindsay for details at, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

EXCLUSIVE

AFFORDABLE

Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Website Marketing With over 7,000 visits/month to the Chamber website, this is where you want to be. Market your business to locals and those looking to move and/or visit here. Want more information? Contact Lindsay Quick at LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org.

Event Sponsorship

From monthly First Friday Coffee and Business After Hours to our annual Golf Outing, the Chamber hosts a number of events each month. By sponsoring a Chamber event, your business obtains great exposure not only at the event itself, but also within all promotional materials (emails, mailings, e-newsletters, Commerce Connection, website, etc.). We have numerous opportunities throughout the year, here’s what’s coming up: • Breakfast Series - $1,000 per breakfast (available) • Annual Meeting Title Sponsorship - $3,000 (available)

Additional information for events such as Business Success and Solutions Seminars is available upon request. Contact ArielS@champaign county.org or call 217.359.1791 with any event sponsorship inquiries.

Online Business Directory Enhancements Enhance your listing on the Chamber’s online business directory. The directory gets hundreds of thousands of views each day--turn your standard (complimentary) listing into an eye-catching, search engine optimized advertisement. Basic upgrade: included w/membership

Value upgrade: $20/year

Deluxe upgrade: $50/year

Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Complimentary services: rental of laptop computer; conference space and LCD projector; Certificate of Origin; Notary service; information, assistance and resources.

REACH THOUSANDS ON A SMALL BUDGET.


calendar of events Business After Hours

Thursday, August 17 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. I Hotel and Conference Center 1900 S. First St., Chamapign *New Location

Connect@Lunch

Monday, August 21 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Outback Steakhouse 2402 N. Prospect Ave., Champaign

ACE Opening Reception

Leading Ladies - Sip & Savor Wednesday, September 6 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Big Grove Tavern 1 E. Main St., Champaign

Starting a Small Business

Business Advisors’ Council (BAC) Thursday, September 7 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

ACE Myers-Briggs Test - Part 2

Thursday, August 24 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Papa Del’s Pizza 1201 S. Neil St., Champaign

Thursday, September 7 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Ribbon Cutting

ACE - Words that Work

Rincker Law, PLLC

Wednesday, August 30 9:00 - 9:30 a.m. 301 N. Neil St., Ste. 400 Champaign

ACE Myers-Briggs Test - Part 1 Thursday, August 31 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Chamber Office Closed Labor Day Monday, September 4 Business Success & Solutions Seminar

Wealth Creation & Management Through Investment Analysis Presented by Bill Cooper, President, W.K. Cooper II Asset Management Corporation

Tuesday, September 5 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Thursday, September 14 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Connect@Lunch

Monday, September 18 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Outback Steakhouse 2402 N. Prospect Ave., Champaign

ACE - Challenge Course Thursday, September 21 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. Allerton Park & Retreat Center 515 Old Timber Rd., Monticello

Fast Facts

4.0% Champaign County Unemployment Rate in May 2017

35 business licenses applied for in Champaign County in July 2017

104.3

July 2017 U of I Flash Index for Illinois

424,219 rides were taken on CUMTD in June 2017

5,821 visits to the Chamber’s page, champaigncounty.org in July 2017

7,669 average amount of referrals PER DAY the

Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Online Business Directory received via search engines and online sources in July 2017

2014 The year that the Champaign County

Chamber of Commerce was named the Illinois Outstanding Chamber of the Year

Creating a Business Plan

Business Advisors’ Council (BAC) Thursday, September 21 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Business After Hours

Thursday, September 21 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust 2229 S. Neil St., Champaign

303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809 www.champaigncounty.org


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Commerce connection july august 2017  
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