A commission that represents five counties and 44 cities along the Iowa-Illinois border is asking the governors of Iowa and Illinois to join forces and try to land a Boeing plant in the Quad Cities.
The Bi-State Regional Commission in the Quad Cities has sent a letter to Iowa Governor Terry Branstad and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. The commission is asking the governors to promote a “regional bid” for the plant, which will make Boeing’s new 777X airliner. Boeing plans to announce in early 2014 which state has won the bidding for its new plant, which will employ up to 8500.
The St. Louis Post Dispatch obtained a copy of a company memo which indicates Boeing is asking states to offer incentive packages that cover most of the new facility’s estimated $10 billion cost. Lawmakers in the state of Washington, where Boeing already operates, approved a $9 billion incentive package earlier this year. The aerospace giant has indicated a key vote among its union workers in Washington in early January might seal the deal for that state. However, Missouri offered Boeing a nearly $2 billion incentive package earlier this month and lawmakers in California are lobbying Boeing to build its new plant in Long Beach, as Boeing plans to close its cargo jet plant in Long Beach in 2015.
Boeing’s new 777X has the capacity to carry up to 400 passengers and company executives says customers have signed contracts to buy 280 of the planes.