Illinois tax break deals yield uncertain results for state

CHICAGO (AP) — A newspaper’s analysis of Illinois’ signature corporate tax-break program has found the companies that receive the deals often don’t add jobs and sometimes even lay off workers.

A Chicago Tribune analysis of 783 tax deals the state has made through the Economic Development for a Growing Economy program found that two-thirds of the companies that completed agreements didn’t maintain agreed-upon job levels.

And state officials can’t say how many jobs have been created by the program known as EDGE.

Illinois has used the program since 1999 to help lure new firms or hang onto employers who might move elsewhere, while encouraging them to add jobs.

Gov. Bruce Rauner put EDGE on hold in June. But new deals reached with Amazon and ConAgra before then have recently been announced.