January 5, 2016

Ronda Sauget
As we close out 2015 and begin with a strong 2016, the stories below
illustrate that we are off to a great year ahead!  The stories demonstrate that construction projects from Alton to Columbia are on a strong path to completion with Memorial Hospital East, a $124M project, being completed with plans to open the new facility in April 2016. 
With the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) location decision in the near future, a story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch highlights St. Clair County's strong competitive proposal with even more adjacent land being offered so the facility could reach its 99 year projected growth plans and beyond at the NGA West location. Madison County officially launched a new Township website, www.EdwardsvilleTownship.com, to serve as a better link to township services in the community. Many Leadership Council members are highlighted in the stories below. We strongly encourage you to read on about the positive stories about Southwestern Illinois!
Welcome 2016!

Ronda Sauget

Executive Director
Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois
Move the NGA facility to St. Clair County
(St. Louis Post Dispatch, 12/18/2015)
When the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency announced it was looking for sites in the greater St. Louis area to construct a new, advanced technology facility, Chairman Mark Kern and members of the St. Clair County Board stepped up and submitted an excellent proposal for a 182-acre site adjacent to Scott Air Force Base near Belleville.
Edwardsville Township launches new website
(Riverbender.com, 12/16/2015) 
Supervisor Frank Miles today announced that Edwardsville Township has officially launched a new Township website,www.EdwardsvilleTownship.com. The project is one of many initiatives undertaken by Supervisor Frank Miles since he took office to better link township services to the community.
(Read More)
Multimodal Work To Ramp Up
(WBGZ, 12/24/2015)
Earlier this year, shovels struck dirt for the first time for the new Multimodal Transportation Center.  Much of the work to this point has been infrastructure-related, but the Alton City Council has approved going out for bids on the actual construction of the train station, platform, bus station, and other associated facilities
(Read More)
Program focuses on helping small businesses
(Edwardsville Intelligencer, 1/4/2016) 
A program hoping to reduce burdensome state regulations, that many say are strangling small businesses in Illinois, took effect Jan. 1.
Local Government Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force issues final report to Governor
(Riverbender, 1/4/2016)
Illinois Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti today formally presented Governor Bruce Rauner with the Local Government Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates Task Force's final report.
Illinois could tap $4B worth of special funds in budget mess
(Alton Telegraph, 12/20/2015)
Half a year into its deepening budget crisis, the state of Illinois is sitting on at least $4 billion in cash.
(Read More)
Godfrey approves final enterprise zone plans
(Alton Telegraph, 12/16/2015)
Village trustees approved final plans for the Jersey-Greene County Intermodal Enterprise Zone at Tuesday night's board meeting.
(Read More)
Memorial Hospital East construction completed
(St. Louis Business Journal, 12/17/2015)
Construction has been completed on Memorial Hospital East, a $124 million satellite hospital that Belleville's Memorial is building in Shiloh. But hospital officials said there's more work ahead before the new facility opens April 12.
(Read More)
Data show Illinois 20th in high school graduation rates
(Chicago Tribune, 12/15/2015)
New data from the U.S. Department of Education show that 86 percent of Illinois students graduate from high school. That's the 20th-highest graduation rate in the country.
(Read More)

Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois bringing STEM opportunities to girls
(Alton Telegraph, 12/15/2015)
Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois robotics program has had great success so far this year.
(Read More)
Treasurers office invested $1 million in school district bonds
(Riverbender.com, 12/22/15)
Treasurer Kurt Prenzler announced this week his office invested more than $1 million in school district bonds within Madison County.
Alton Middle School up to code: STEM-focused programs assist students' computer coding
(Alton Telegraph, 12/14/2015)
Alton Middle School has embraced a worldwide education focus on science and technology through participating in the "Hour of Code" initiative, as well as Project Lead the Way.
(Read More)
St. Elizabeth's Hospital names new CEO
(St. Louis Business Journal, 12/16/2015)
Hospital Sisters Health System has appointed Peggy Sebastian as the new president and CEO of St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Belleville.
(Read More)
New magazine promotes the good in East St. Louis
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/26/2015)
Negative talk about East St. Louis spurred Charmaine Savage to do something positive. The 49-year-old retired naval officer is launching a slick bimonthly magazine that will celebrate her city. 
(Read More)
Juneau Associates receives Quality Concrete Award
(Illinois Business Journal 12/16/2015)
The Metro East professional engineering, land surveying and construction management company, Juneau Associates, Inc., P.C., has received the Quality Concrete Award from the Concrete Council and American Steel Fabrication for its recent work on the Timberlake Manor Parkway in Chesterfield, Mo.
(Read More)
More Road Work for Godfrey in 2016
(WBGZ, 12/23/2015)
Upcoming roadwork in the Village of Godfrey in the new year will include more work in subdivisions and in some of the more rural areas of the village.  Larger projects that have been approved by local and state transportation officials are on the calendar for 2017 and 2018.
IDOT to replace Illinois 157 bridge over Illinois 161
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/29/2015)
The Illinois Department of Transportation is scheduled on Jan. 4 to begin the replacement of a bridge carrying Illinois 157 over Illinois 161.
(Read More)
Mississippi River projects among the recipients
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/17/2015)
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will receive a 27 percent spending boost in a $1.1 trillion budget bill working its way through Congress this week that includes money for work on the Mississippi River.
(Read More) 

Illinois Division of United Way raises more than $1.43 million for Metro East
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/18/2015)
People in the Illinois Division of the United Way of Greater St. Louis have again demonstrated their generosity by raising $1,431,506 for the 2015 fund-raising campaign to help their neighbors in need.
(Read More)
11 South Project Started in Columbia, IL
(Construct for STL, 12/2015)
Korte & Luitjohan Contractors, Inc., announced that it has been selected as Construction Manager for the 11 South Project in Columbia, IL. 
Year-to-date Metro East home sales continue to rise
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/29/2015)
The Realtors Association of Southwestern Illinois has released the November 2015 Metro East housing statistics. St. Clair, Monroe, Clinton, and Randolph counties again reported an increase in year-to-date home sales in November 2015 compared to November 2014.
(Read More)
Illinois home prices see uptick in November; sales dial back
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/29/2015)
Illinois home prices posted continued gains with November marking 39 consecutive months of year-over-year increases while sales slowed slightly amid tighter inventory, according to the Illinois Association of Realtors.
(Read More)
IMPACT Strategies completes new building and Dollar Tree store in Collinsville
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/16/2015)
Construction-management firm IMPACT Strategies recently completed construction of a new retail building and Dollar Tree store in Collinsville. The building is located at 609 Beltline Road, adjacent to Kohl's and Schnucks Plaza.
(Read More)
Higher Education: McKendree's social media efforts honored
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/30/2015)
McKendree University in Lebanon was honored in two of the most competitive categories in the 2015 Education Digital Marketing Awards.
(Read More)
Senior living facilities: A growing need
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/26/2015)
The number of facilities where seniors can spend their retirement has grown in the metro-east in recent years. And with more members of the Baby Boomer generation retiring each year, that need is expected to continue to increase.
(Read More)

Art on the Square again claims title of best art fair
(Belleville News-Democrat, 1/2/2016)
Art show ranked No. 1 for fifth time in 14 years in terms of art sales. Artists' sales topped $1.2 million in 2015. Gregory attributes success to community involvement, donations.
(Read More)

Streetscape project on North Illinois Street in Belleville to continue for another year
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/18/2015)
Shopkeepers along North Illinois Street will give you sharply different opinions on the roadwork project tearing up the busy road through town.
(Read More)
IMPACT Strategies building Ameren facility
(Illinois Business Journal, 1/4/2016) 
Fairview Heights-based IMPACT Strategies says construction has begun on a new $5.3 million facility in Decatur for Ameren Illinois.
(Read More)
Scott Credit Union gives $1.3 million back to members
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/25/2015)
Just in time for the holidays, area residents who have savings accounts or loans with Scott Credit Union are putting extra money in their pockets.
(Read More)
Local entrepreneur advances in contest
(Edwardsville Intelligencer, 12/15/2015)
Erica Harriss, a Glen Carbon resident and owner of Saving Grace Beauty, LLC has won first prize in the first round of InnovateHER, a national entrepreneur contest.  Harriss is among 200 winners nationwide who hope to be one of the 10 selected to vie for a spot in the national InnovateHER competition in early 2016.
Change of plans: District 7 Edwardsville to seek education fund increase rather than bonds
(Belleville News-Democrat, 12/25/2015)
Edwardsville District 7 voters will not see a question about $10 million in bond sales on the March ballot, but they will be asked for a permanent tax increase in November.
(Read More)
Shorter Illinois highway emerges from failed interstate bid
(The Alton Telegraph, 1/2/2016) 
A long-planned federal highway across southern Illinois connecting Cape Girardeau, Missouri to Paducah, Kentucky is no more - at least for now.
(Read More)
The Gathering Restaurant opens in Smithton
(Belleville News-Democrat, 1/3/16)
Zapata's Mexican Restaurant & Cantina anticipates opening in Fairview Heights later this month.  Outback Steakhouse in Swansea now open for lunch.  LiveStrong program comes to metro-east YMCAs
(Read More) 

New Douglas startup's burger business sizzling
(Illinois Business Journal, 1/4/2016) 
Local people and those passing through New Douglas, an Illinois town of approximately 300, are enjoying hand-patted burgers and Ski sodas without having to step out of their vehicles.
(Read More)
Alton branch of Boys and Girls Club continues growth trend
(Advantage News, 1/2/2016)
The Alton branch of the Boys and Girls Club was formed in 1990 as a way to reach young people in need and help them attain their full potential.
(Read More) 

In Other News
U.S. Steel, union reach tentative contract deal
(St. Louis Business Journal, 12/21/2015)
Granite City Works is the primary flat-roll supplier for the oil and gas industry. U.S. Steel and United Steelworkers have reached a tentative three-year contract deal, but it's unclear what impact, if any, it will have on pending layoffs at the company's operations in Granite City.
(Read More)
Pennekamp hired by county
(Edwardsville Intelligencer, 12/17/2015)
Eight hours before Madison County Board members were scheduled to vote on whether to remove Andy Economy as head of the Metro East Sanitation District, Economy handed members of the MESD board his letter of resignation.
Illinois Tops in Volunteering
(WBGZ, 12/21/2015)
A new report finds Illinois' volunteer rate is the highest among the country's largest states.  Last year in Illinois more than 2 1/2 million people spent time volunteering, serving nearly 275-million total hours.
Casino's Toyland event spreads cheer to hundreds of children
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/24/2015)
More than 1,900 little boys and girls from East St. Louis School District 189 visited a winter wonderland at the Casino Queen Hotel last week, where they were surprised with a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus at the Casino Queen's 22nd Annual Toyland event held Dec. 15 and 16.
(Read More)
Alton Red Kettle total largest ever
(The Telegraph, 12/25/2015)
Alton Corps Red Kettle Campaign netted "historic numbers" this year with a total of approximately $83,000 - $16,000 above last year's haul, the largest amount ever raise by the Alton-based effort.
(Read More)
OSF Saint Anthony's gets Top Performer rating fourth year running
(Illinois Business Journal, 12/15/2015)
OSF Saint Anthony's Health Center has been named one of the nation's Top Performers on Key Quality Measures by The Joint Commission, an accreditor of health care organizations in America.
(Read More)

HSHS St. Elizabeth's Mother Child Center receives recognition
(Illinois Business Journal, December 2015)
HSHS St. Elizabeth's Hospital recently received recognition for meeting the birth certificate accuracy guidelines of 95 percent set by the Illinois Perinatal Quality Collaborative's Birth Certificate Accuracy Initiative.
(Read More)
Interim dean named at SIUE School of Engineering
(Illinois Business Journal, December 2015)
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has appointed Cem Karacal, PhD, professor and associate dean in the School of Engineering, as interim dean beginning Jan. 1.
(Read More)


Leadership Council members associated with projects in this issue


Madison County IL

Riverbend Growth Association

Holland Logo

St. Elizabeth's Hosp

Lewis & Clark Logo

Memorial Hospital

Realtor Association of Southwestern Illinois

McKendree Logo

Scott Credit Union Logo

St. Elizabeth's Hosp




Learn more about Scott Patriot at scottpatriot.com





Contact Information

Ronda Sauget, Executive Director, Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois


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