January 31, 2013

The December (not seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate was essentially unchanged for the Peoria MSA, rising slightly to 8.3 percent in December 2012 from 8.2 percent in December 2011.   “December marks another month that shows falling unemployment rates throughout our state,” IDES Director Jay Rowell said. “The most pressing challenge to our economic progress is the uncertainty tied to Congress, the debt ceiling and the fiscal cliff. Our economic recovery could be compromised if Congress is not seen as working together to build a solution.”  See Greater Peoria regional trend charts below...





January 31, 2013

Governor Quinn Announces $50 Million for Local Transportation Improvement Projects

Investment Will Fund 54 Community Projects, Including Bike Paths, Walking Trails, Beautification and Support More Than 400 Jobs***

Click here to view project list

Click here for full release from State of Illinois

January 29, 2013

Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis stressed the importance of working together to build a brighter tomorrow for Peoria to a crowd of nearly 700 at the 13th annual Peoria State of the City Address hosted by the Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce.  He recapped 2012 but focused more on topics that will shape Peoria’s future including job creation, quality of life, economic growth and education.

The mayor's speech can be found by clicking here.

See photos from the event by clicking here.








January 21, 2013

PEORIA, IL (January 17, 2013)—SCORE Peoria’s contributions to the community were recognized in two very special ways this week.  First, the SCORE District leadership for Illinois recognized SCORE Peoria as the 2012 Chapter of the Year.  Second, SCORE Peoria member, John Amdall, was selected as the SCORE Mentor of the year for 2012.

January 21, 2013

Peoria, IL (January 21, 2013)—Peoria comes in at #62 on Milken Institute’s Best Performing Cities List for 2012.  That’s up from #68 last year and #87 in 2010.  The study compares job, wage, and technology performance metrics over a five-year period to capture the structural elements of the region.  Greater Peoria experienced an increase in GDP Growth compared to last year, while job growth and wages/salaries remained relatively unchanged from 2011.  

 Greater Peoria is the second best performing community among large US cities in comparison to our peer and aspirational (*) communities recognized in the 2012 Greater Peoria Economic Scorecard.


2012 Rank

2011 Rank




Ft. Wayne IN



Chattanooga TN



Grand Rapids MI



Rockford IL               



Dayton OH



Quad Cities IA/IL



Lexington KY



Springfield MO



*Madison WI



*Des Moines IA



*Omaha NE




January 15, 2013

Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis will deliver his annual State of the City Address on Tuesday January 29th at 11:45AM at the Peoria Civic Center Ballroom.  He will recap 2012 and shares his visions for

December 11, 2012

Peoria NEXT continues to support technology and innovation in Greater Peoria by awarding VirtuSense Technologies (VST) $50,000 through its research grant program.  According to Peoria NEXT CEO Grant Brewen, “This grant supports innovation and the implementation of commercialization in the areas of life science, physical science, material science, and engineering science.  VST was chosen based on the company’s inter-institutional collaboration, scientific/technical merit, commercialization potential, and future access to funding.”  Funds for this Grant Program were obtained through donations to Peoria NEXT.  




December 11, 2012

Peoria, Illinois might not be one of the first places you’d think of as a high-tech center nationally, but a new study released by Engine Advocacy -- “Technology Works” shows Peoria is the #3 metropolitan area in the nation in the “Top 25 Metros for High-Tech Employment Growth from 2010-2011.”

December 3, 2012

Earlier this year, Milken Institute released new report measuring “Best Cities for Successful Aging.”  Of the 300 small metros in the US, Peoria ranks in the middle at the 149th best place for successful aging.  Greater Peoria has an aging population with 65% of the MSA’s residents being over the age of 65.  When the Milken Institute research is broken down further you find that Peoria MSA ranks 151 for 65-79 age group and 160 for the 80+ age group.  The Best Cities for Successful Aging is a comprehensive index that generates a composite ranking for each metro area.  The composite ranking is based on eight subcomponents: general indicators, health care, wellness, living arrangements, transportation & convenience, financial well-being, employment & education, and community engagement.  When looking specifically at the eight subcomponents it’s no surprise that the region’s best ranking was in the healthcare category.  Healthcare is considered one of the strongest and fastest growing industries in the region.  Greater Peoria ranked high in access to doctors, nurses and overall hospital services. 

Read more here


November 26, 2012

October local unemployment rates fell in every IL metro area compared to last year and were at their lowest levels for the month since 2008, according to preliminary data released last week by the