RDA Approves Job Creation Incentives

The Board of Directors of the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority today authorized the use of $3.3 million from the RDA’s No-Interest Securitized Forgivable Loan Fund to support job creation efforts in Northwest Indiana.

The funds will be used to support two projects, one in Lake County and one in Porter County, which combined would result in approximately $33 million in investment and the creation of up to 285 jobs. Further details remain confidential pending completion of the deals. No RDA funds will be issued if the projects do not come to fruition.

“We are working closely with local and state officials on these and other efforts to create jobs and grow the economy in Northwest Indiana,” said Bill Hanna, RDA President and CEO.

Since 2011, the RDA has used the No-Interest Securitized Forgivable Loan Fund six times to help the Indiana Economic Development Corporation secure approximately 854 jobs and $474 million in investment in the region. If these two projects are realized, those numbers would rise to 1,139 jobs and more than $507 million in investment.

Hammond, RDA Celebrate Boardwalk Opening

(l. to r.) Tom Dabertin, Hammond appointee to the RDA Board of Directors, Hammond Mayor Tom McDermott and RDA President and CEO Bill Hanna at today’s dedication.

Hammond residents and officials marked the opening of the new boardwalk and bike trail at Wolf Lake in a ceremony on the new span this afternoon. “This is one of the most unique bike trails I’ve ever seen,” said Hammond mayor and cyclist Tom McDermott. The new trail, which runs along a formerly inaccessible portion of Wolf Lake next to the Indiana Toll Road, combines a blacktop path laid on a NIPSCO right-of-way with a 1,200-foot boardwalk over part of the lake itself. This part of the trail will in turn be connected to the Illinois trail system later this year.

The new connection is part of the more than $50 million in improvements at Wolf Lake over the past several years. Other new features include the Pavilion, a new conservatory, a splash pad and a makeover of Forsythe Park. All of the improvements were fueled by a grant of more than $30 million from the Regional Development Authority. “This was a partnership between the city, the Hammond Port Authority and the RDA,” the mayor said. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”

“Without implementation, a visionary runs the risk of being called just a dreamer,” said Bill Hanna, President and CEO of the RDA. “The City of Hammond is fortunate to have someone in Mayor McDermott who can do both. This is a compelling gateway to Chicago and he has done a fabulous job.”

More pictures below the fold.
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East Chicago Seeking to Connect Contractors and Local Workers for Lakefront Project

From the City of East Chicago:

The City of East Chicago is seeking Qualified Contractors to work on the $17 Million Dollar RDA funded Phase One Waterfront Revitalization Project.

Mayor Anthony Copeland is breaking new ground with connecting contractors, subcontractors, qualified workers and unskilled laborers together to work on East Chicago projects with a new and innovated website called the Workforce Employment Connection. For more information visit www.eastchicago.com and click on the link Workforce Employment Connection.

Any contractor that is awarded a construction project from the City of East Chicago will be required to register at this site. The contractor can then seek out any City of East Chicago resident workforce applicant who may possess the necessary skills to help fill positions on the project. There is no fee for this service.

The site also provides the residents of East Chicago an opportunity to share their resumes directly with any contractor that is awarded a construction project in the City. This contractor is then encouraged to seek out hiring opportunities of workforce personnel that resides within the City of East Chicago. There is no fee to join and no monthly service or subscription fees. Residents applying must have work experience.

For complete information click here.