DCEDC Members and other Businesses/Organizations:

Thank you for your support of local restaurants, retailers, and hospitality providers during the initial COVID-19 stay-at-home order in the Spring. As you know, the recent increase in positive COVID-19 cases has resulted in the shutdown of indoor dining once again, critically endangering the survival of our local restaurants and hospitality providers. Regretfully, some have already announced closures.

We believe now, more than ever, heightened support of local restaurants and hospitality providers is critical. We kindly request that you continue to patronize the local business, and consider an increase of your support to our local restaurants and hospitality providers by ordering carryout meals and box lunches as well as purchasing gift cards.

Restaurants are ready and able to do a daily meal replacement program at your site or to your employees’ homes in DeKalb County. A full list of restaurants can be found here   Daily Chronicle take-out dining information.  Grassroots organization, DeKalb County UNITES is offering a raffle to win a local restaurant gift card.  Please see their information below, on how to be entered into their raffle.

Support local restaurants by ordering pick-up, curbside, delivery, or dining outdoors! Enter your chance to win a local restaurant gift card through DeKalb County UNITES by taking a picture while supporting a local restaurant and posting it on your social media with the hashtag #DKCUnites. Winners will be drawn every Friday! Visit dekalb.org for a list of restaurants to support.

Attached, please find an invitation to participate in a survey that is being conducted by DCEDC’s Business Retention/Talent Pipeline Committee. We are interested in identifying and addressing your needs by conducting a COVID-19 Business Resource & Needs Survey. If you have recently taken this survey, we thank you for doing so. If you have not taken this survey, we welcome your participation in completing it. For your convenience, please see the link to our page where you can view, and take the survey.  Click here to take the brief COVID-19 Business Resources & Needs Survey

We look forward to your survey response and invite your engagement in the dialogue to address needs, challenges, as we seek solutions. Please contact me if you have any questions or recommendations.

My best regards,

 

Paul Borek-Executive Director, DCEDC

 

 

Date posted: November 9, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on An important message from DCEDC Executive Director, Paul Borek

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News

 

DeKalb County UNITES is urging residents to make a special effort to patronize local establishments in the days ahead. Supporting your favorite places now will help to ensure that they are able to make it through this period of restricted operations.

Snap a pic and you may get a prize!

Let’s have fun while doing the serious work of helping local businesses get through this challenging time.  Take a selfie or snap a pic of your family dining outdoors, picking up food, or receiving a delivery from a local establishment and send it to DeKalb County UNITES on our Facebook page messenger https://www.facebook.com/dkcUNITES.  UNITES and its partner organization, the DeKalb County Convention & Visitors Bureau (DCCVB) will post pictures on our Facebook page to celebrate and thank you for your patronage.  UNITES and DCCVB will randomly surprise some lucky customers with prizes, including restaurant/bar gift certificates.  We celebrate your community spirit and keep the dollars flowing to local businesses.

A few more ideas for supporting local restaurants/bars

·     Bundle up and continue enjoying outdoor service. Hearty Huskie fans are used to tailgating in chilly conditions! Get out your cold-weather gear and head out to one of the many patio seating areas that have been established at restaurants and bars around the county. Help extend the season by dressing warmly and continuing to enjoy great food and drink outdoors.

·     Order food for pick-up and treat your family to a delicious meal at home from a local restaurant. Great options are available at a variety of price points and you can be sure that the restaurants know how to prepare and package your food safely.

·     Give feedback to owners. Don’t see something on the menu that your family loves? Let them know what you’d like. Can’t get out to pick up food and need delivery? Give them a call and see if they can work it out. Local establishments are always eager to please you, especially now.

·     Let the restaurants cater your special meals and family events at your home. Remote learning and navigating new work rules can be stressful. Instead of spending hours cooking special meals, give yourself a break and let the experts take over. Consult with your favorite restaurants to see what’s possible.

·     #Maskup! Help local establishments comply with local health guidelines and stop the spread by wearing your mask consistently, completely, and cheerfully. Please don’t add to the stress of servers and managers by arguing about wearing your mask.

·     Tip generously.  Foodservice workers are among the hardest hit in terms of job loss and wage loss in this pandemic. In DeKalb County, there’s a good chance your server is a student.  Give them a little extra if you can.

For more information about DeKalb County UNITES, #MaskUp DeKalb County or to find additional resources for small businesses, go to https://www.dekalbcountyunites.com/

Date posted: November 9, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on An important message for our Hospitality-Restaurant Businesses

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News

During the early weeks of fall, DCEDC Executive Director gave an interview to freelance writer, D.M. Herra.  To read this well-written article to learn about the timeline and all that went into bringing these mega projects to DeKalb,  please click on the link to read the article. Ferrara & Facebook DC Magazine Article September 2020 (Shaw Media)

Business Friendly, Speed to Market, Location, Transporation, Shovel Ready Sites, Incentives, Illinois Enterprise Zone, Skilled Labor Market, Higher-Learning Institutions.

Date posted: November 2, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on DC Magazine features Mega projects Ferrara and Facebook in the September 2020 edition

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News Regional Economic Updates

For Immediate Release:

Kishwaukee College awarded TRIO Grant

The U.S. Department of Education renewed and awarded Kishwaukee College the TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) grant.  The grant will provide the College with $1.3 million over a five-year program cycle. The award for the first year of the grant is $261,888.

The TRIO SSS program is available to first-generation college students who meet income eligibility requirements, as well as students with documented disabilities that impact academic performance and achievement.  The program has three main objectives for students: increase persistence; maintain good academic standing; and graduation and transfer with an associate’s degree or certificate within four years.

Dr. Michelle Rothmeyer, Vice President of Student Services at Kish, stated, “The College is excited to begin our second cycle of the TRIO SSS grant. During the first cycle of the grant, the program exceeded benchmarks for persistence and completion and contributed to the success of the students enrolled in the program.”

Students enrolled in the program receive support through tutoring, advisement in postsecondary course selection, transfer assistance, learning communities, success coaches, career awareness, and job shadowing. “Each participating student will undergo a comprehensive needs assessment to develop an individualized Student Success Plan. Providing wrap around services to meet student needs, has proven to be successful in the overall retention and completion rate of TRIO SSS students,” says Dariana Lee, Director of Student Success. TRIO SSS Grant Aid may also be available in select circumstances to assist students whose academic progress and retention may be adversely affected by financial challenges.

For more information on the TRIO SSS program at Kish, contact Savannah Ilenikhena, Director, TRIO Student Support Services, at 815-825-2950 or at silenikhena@kish.edu.

Date posted: October 26, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on Kishwaukee College awarded TRIO Grant

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News

The DeKalb Chamber of Commerce offers the following-

Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Workshop

 
Zoom

While your business has probably be focused on surviving COVID-19, we want to remind you of the deadline nearing for completing Sexual Harassment Prevention Training. Every employer with employees working in the State of Illinois is required to provide all employees with annual sexual harassment prevention training. Register you and your employees for SBDC’s Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Workshop that is compliant with Illinois law. The workshop will be a Zoom presentation from 12-1:30 on Tuesday, October 27th.

Free for DeKalb Chamber members. $25 for prospective members.

 

Date posted: October 19, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on Sexual Harassment Prevention Training Workshop

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News

Facebook, Ferrara Candy, and Syngenta have announced plans or begun construction of 2.6 million square feet of development on 700 acres of land valued at nearly $1 billion creating 700 jobs.

These developments will impact host communities and townships by creating career jobs and generating significant property tax revenue. However, these developments alone will not transform the DeKalb County economy and improve prosperity and the quality of life for residents.

To sustain business attraction throughout DeKalb County, we need to promote business assets and communicate our successes across the region, state, and nation. To ensure the success of new and established businesses, we need to attract young people, students, professionals, and entrepreneurs to live, buy homes, raise families, and start businesses in DeKalb County.

During the past decade, DeKalb County has lost population in the 18 – 34 age group (-2.4%) and the 35 – 49 age group (-7.4%). To reverse these trends, we need to recognize what makes DeKalb County attractive to current residents and communicate these attributes to the marketplace.

With the support of the DeKalb County Community Foundation, DCEDC contracted with DCC Marketing to develop a brand positioning, creative, messaging, and marketing strategy for that will: recruit businesses to locate to DeKalb County from strong and growing industry sectors and to Increase the population of young professionals and families. Targeted industries include agriculture, food processing, technology-based companies, and research & development in partnership with NIU.

Extensive grassroots, community, business, and leadership focus groups contributed to brand development. Most agreed that one of DeKalb County’s challenges is a lack of identity. Nonetheless, these residents expressed that they choose to live in DeKalb County and aren’t going anywhere because of the strong quality of life attributes including affordable housing, convenient commute to work, employment opportunities, safe communities, and quality education systems.

When asked to characterize DeKalb County with keywords, the most common response was “opportunity.” When asked to elaborate, respondents expressed that there was no limit to what could be achieved.

Hence, the word “unbound” acknowledges that while DeKalb has always had a lot to offer, we’re taking it to the next level. It connotes a feeling of adventure, excitement, and optimism about what’s to come, all of which are appealing to the target audience of young professionals and families.

The brand “Opportunity Unbound” provides a set-up to talk about lesser-known aspects of the county and to promote new initiatives. DeKalb County is a growing, vibrant community where residents and businesses flourish. The county’s unique location and talented workforce attracts top-tier international corporations and provides residents abundant opportunity to excel in one of many growing sectors. With affordable housing, quality healthcare, and exceptional education, DeKalb County is truly a place to “live, work, play, and repeat.”

The mission of the branding initiative for DeKalb County is to create a countywide collaborative business climate that delivers a consistent message and narrative which contributes to business and population growth.

“A thoughtfully-developed brand and consistently-executed marketing plan are necessary to ensure future success,” according to the Opportunity Unbound Branding Playbook. “The responsibility and authority to steward the marketing activities through a collaborative, strategic, and long-term effort must be embodied in a County Marketing Manager.”

The Opportunity Unbound branding strategy specifies how to reach target audiences, such as prospective businesses and corporations through LinkedIn, and community organizations, workers, and people in surrounding counties through Facebook and YouTube.  Tactics also include brand ambassadors, news and radio, fliers and collateral, promotional signage,  public relations, website, digital marketing, and advertising, video, and organic social media.

Sample messaging for business would be: “Land of opportunity. That’s got a nice ring to it. Shovel-ready development sites with preapproved incentives, extensive supplier networks, easy access to Chicago and Mid-American markets, and a skilled workforce ready to boost your bottom line. We don’t know what kind of list you have, but we’re pretty sure that ticks all the boxes. Whatever you’re looking for, you’ll find it here in DeKalb County.”

For prospective and current residents: “We get it. You want affordable housing, good schools, access to quality healthcare. Job opportunities in a growing local economy and access to modern amenities without losing that small-town charm. An environment where you can truly live, work, and play. What if we told you there’s all that and more in DeKalb County? That sounds like a home run to us, but we’re biased.”

For prospective visitors: “Some may say there is nothing to do here, but they couldn’t be more wrong. You see, in DeKalb County, we believe only boring people get bored. Microbreweries, farm-to-table dining, art, antiques, orchards galore. We’ve got all the buzzwords. What more could you really want? So, get out there. Leave no stone unturned, no festival unattended. It’s an adventure if you make it.”

To execute the plan, DCEDC is meeting with business and community leaders to generate funding required to hire a County Marketing Manager, prepare collateral and fund the diversified advertising and promotional campaign

Opportunity Unbound Video

 

 

DeKalb County Playbook

 

Daily Chronicle Article-Opportunity Unbound

Date posted: October 13, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on Opportunity Unbound – A Strategy for Economic & Community Prosperity

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News Regional Economic Updates

DCEDC is proud to support and promote our manufacturers! As we celebrate National Manufacturing Month, please let us know if your plant is hosting (physically or virtually) events and activities that are inspirational to the next generations of manufacturers, as well as your dedicated and hard-working employees.

DCEDC would like our manufacturing members to be the voice of individual manufacturers and coordinate a collective chorus in delivering the message of modern manufacturing.

During National Manufacturing Month, please share with us your company’s recent blogs, news, and social media posts about how you help your communities and future generations thrive so that we can promote them on our social media platforms.

DCEDC applauds all the manufacturers and associated groups, educational organizations, individuals, and pledges to continue to be a valuable resource to all.

Most importantly, please let us know if you have common concerns and challenges so that we can assist in identifying opportunities for you. Together, we can address collective challenges to help our DeKalb County communities, and the future generations thrive!

To participate, please contact Karen Hoyle by clicking and on this link- to participate with the subject line ” National Manufacturing Month” Thank you!

Date posted: October 8, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on It’s National Manufacturing Month

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News Regional Economic Updates

Important Information for Illinois Employers

DCEDC has been made aware of mandatory training for all employers in the State of Illinois, to be completed by 12/31/2020.

Please see the attached materials from the State of Illinois Department of Human Rights.  More details can be found on the website that can be found in the attached materials.

Please feel free to share this information.

IDHR_SHP-TR01_Minimum_Standards_Training-Ver20200127

IDHR-SHPT-2020-OCT-V2 Training must take by 12312020

 

Date posted: October 6, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on State of Illinois requirement for Employers to provide annual sexual harassment prevention training

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News Regional Economic Updates

Time to UNITE again — plan now to help restaurants and bars weather resurgence mitigations

October 2, 2020 – DeKalb County restaurants and bars must begin operating under new restrictions on October 3, due to an increase in COVID-19 positivity rates in Region 1.  No indoor service is allowed and operating hours have been limited. Outdoor service is allowed but will become less viable as temperatures continue to drop.

Over the last six months, DeKalb County residents have demonstrated many times over that they are committed to supporting their local businesses. Now is the time to redouble our efforts and show the love to our restaurants and bars as they once again face operating restrictions.

DeKalb County UNITES is urging residents to make a special effort to patronize local establishments in the days ahead. Supporting your favorite places now will help to ensure that they are able to make it through this period of restricted operations.

Snap a pic and you may get a prize!

Let’s have fun while doing the serious work of helping local businesses get through this challenging time.  Take a selfie or snap a pic of your family dining outdoors, picking up food, or receiving a delivery from a local establishment and send it to DeKalb County UNITES on our Facebook page messenger rhttps://www.facebook.com/dkcUNITES.  UNITES and its partner organization, the DeKalb County Convention & Visitors Bureau (DCCVB) will post pictures on our Facebook page to celebrate and thank you for your patronage.  UNITES and DCCVB will randomly surprise some lucky customers with prizes, including restaurant/bar gift certificates.  We celebrate your community spirit and keep the dollars flowing to local businesses.

A few more ideas for supporting local restaurants/bars

·     Bundle up and continue enjoying outdoor service. Hearty Huskie fans are used to tailgating in chilly conditions! Get out your cold-weather gear and head out to one of the many patio seating areas that have been established at restaurants and bars around the county. Help extend the season by dressing warmly and continuing to enjoy great food and drink outdoors.

·     Order food for pick-up and treat your family to a delicious meal at home from a local restaurant. Great options are available at a variety of price points and you can be sure that the restaurants know how to prepare and package your food safely.

·     Give feedback to owners. Don’t see something on the menu that your family loves? Let them know what you’d like. Can’t get out to pick up food and need delivery? Give them a call and see if they can work it out. Local establishments are always eager to please you, especially now.

·     Let the restaurants cater special meals and family events at your home. Remote learning and navigating new work rules can be stressful. Instead of spending hours cooking special meals, give yourself a break and let the experts take over. Consult with your favorite restaurants to see what’s possible.

·     #Maskup! Help local establishments comply with local health guidelines and stop the spread by wearing your mask consistently, completely, and cheerfully. Please don’t add to the stress of servers and managers by arguing about wearing your mask.

·     Tip generously.  Foodservice workers are among the hardest hit in terms of job loss and wage loss in this pandemic. In DeKalb County, there’s a good chance your server is a student.  Give them a little extra if you can.

For more information about DeKalb County UNITES, #MaskUp DeKalb County or to find additional resources for small businesses, go to https://www.dekalbcountyunites.com/

Date posted: October 5, 2020 | Author: | Comments Off on An important message from DeKalb County Unites!

Categories: DCEDC & Member Organizations Local Development News Regional Economic Updates