VINCENNES, Ind. (WISH/WTHI) – A state agency found a tongue-in-cheek way to make Illinois’ governor eat his words after an Illinois business moved to Indiana.
About two months ago, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner told the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board, “Believe me, I am going to rip, try to rip the economic guts out of Indiana.” He went on to say, “We’re coming after Indiana big time.”
The rivalry between both states precedes that statement. But today ,a new chapter was added in the border battle for business.
The route to Illinois is one many Hoosier drivers know well. And if Governor Rauner had his way, it wouldn’t just be visitors but businesses hitting the road for the Land of Lincoln.
Unfortunately for him, the opposite happened today in southern Indiana.
Franklin Well Services announced it is moving its headquarters from Lawrenceville, Illinois to Vincennes. The company provides oil and gas services to neighboring states. But more importantly, its move will provide 92 new jobs to the area.
“The leadership that Mayor Yocum and others here in Vincennes and Knox County have provided is creating a kind of environment that’s attracting great businesses,” said Governor Mike Pence.
“We looked at other cities and Vincennes made the best for us because of the proximity to the oil fields and the gas fields, and was able to come to a community that was inviting us,” said Don Jones, Chairman of Franklin Well Services.
The change of scenery for the company was all the ammo the Indiana Economic Development Corporation needed to take a shot at Governor Rauner. The state agency took out a full page ad in the Vincennes Commercial News that read:
Welcome Illinois-based Franklin Wells Services to Indiana! Because Indiana has the ECONOMIC GUTS to attract new business.”
Governor Pence released a statement saying the rivalry between the states is a friendly one and said he hopes one day Illinois can match Indiana’s highly touted business climate.
Besides hiring 92 people, the company said it will bring 200 jobs with it across the border. It said all those employees require a payroll of $19 million, money that would the fuel local and state economy.
24-Hour News 8 talked on the phone with Gov. Rauner’s press secretary and emailed her a copy of the “economic guts” ad. We were hoping to get a response in time for this newscast but we never got it.