With a month still to go this year, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation announced Wednesday that 2012 will set a record for commitments from companies to locate or expand operations in the state.
But IEDC CEO Dan Hasler says he would still like to see more the commitments turn into actual jobs.
Two hundred and twenty companies have made commitments to the IEDC this year to expand or establish new operations in Indiana, translating to around $3.6 billion in investments and more than 20,000 jobs. But those commitments aren’t guarantees. Hasler says on average over the last year, only about four of every five jobs promised has materialized.
“Not what you’d like,” he says “You’d like to have 90, 95 but we also recognize we were coming through a pretty difficult economic period at that point in time.”
The IEDC has been heavily criticized in the past few years for announcing commitments, only to see them fall through.
Terre Haute Democratic Senator Tim Skinner says he thinks 81 percent is a good figure, and hopes IEDC doesn’t make job announcements just to, in his words, “pad their stats”.
“There’s evidence that they’re working hard,” he says. “They’re trying to do what we’ve asked them to do and I think, you know, if they’re that successful, I think that shows an improvement.”
Hasler says any incentive packages offered to the corporations that make commitments are performance-based, requiring the companies to keep their promises before receiving benefits.