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CMAP Media Tip Sheet

July 18, 2013

This tip sheet briefly summarizes newsworthy activities of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP). Reporters should contact Justine Reisinger (312-386-8802 and jreisinger@cmap.illinois.gov) or Hillary Green (312-386-8619 and hgreen@cmap.illinois.gov) for more information.

State and local tax policy indicators are tracked in a new series of CMAP Policy Updates

As recommended by the GO TO 2040 comprehensive regional plan, CMAP is tracking indicators of the state and local tax system's efficiency, equity, and transparency. A series of Policy Updates will examine CMAP's tax system indicators and plans to track them. The first post outlines how CMAP views tax system efficiency, focusing on sales, income, and property taxes in metropolitan Chicago and Illinois compared to other neighboring states. Future posts will examine indicators that track the equity and transparency of the tax system. Implementing tax system reforms that reduce economic distortions, broaden the tax base, and lower tax rates would increase the efficiency of the tax system. GO TO 2040 points out that lowering tax rates for businesses by broadening the tax base would help the region compete more effectively for economic development opportunities. In addition, broadening the tax base to include a broader scope of the economy would improve revenue stability and help revenues increase according to growth in the economy.

 

New guidebook helps communities plan for changing climate

Municipalities of various sizes, from Chicago and Evanston to Park Forest and Niles, are proactively planning for climate change and a more sustainable future. CMAP just released a new resource to help metropolitan Chicago communities adapt their planning and investment decisions to a changing climate. The steps recommended in the Climate Adaptation Guidebook for Municipalities in the Chicago Region will help communities increase their resilience to future weather impacts, recognizing it is much cheaper and less disruptive to plan now for anticipated conditions than to retrofit or rebuild later. This guidebook is part of CMAP's Local Ordinances and Toolkits program, and its appendices include self-assessment and financing tools.

Public and private sector leaders unite to support local food production in Lake County

Nonprofit, public, and private groups throughout Lake County joined forces to strengthen their sustainable local food system. With support from CMAP's Local Technical Assistance (LTA) program, this two-year project resulted in a variety of resources and recommendations, both for exploring policy changes to better support sustainable agriculture as an economic development tool and for updating the master plan of the Liberty Prairie Reserve -- an area of Lake County with a unique mix of sustainable agriculture and land preservation. Some of the key project deliverables include the Lake County Sustainable Local Food System Report, the Liberty Prairie Reserve Master Plan, and the master plan's summary brochure. Increased local food production could create over 5,000 jobs and annually generate $6.5 billion in economic activity across the seven-county Chicago region, according to an Iowa State University study. To learn more about GO TO 2040's emphasis on local food systems, watch a video and access local government resources at www.cmap.illinois.gov/food.

Over 80 applications submitted for local projects that implement GO TO 2040

In response to a joint call for local projects that implement GO TO 2040 recommendations via planning assistance and grants, CMAP and the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) received 84 applications for their respective LTA and Community Planning Programs. A summary of applications to the LTA program, which will be discussed with CMAP's working committees and other stakeholder groups through early September, is available at www.cmap.illinois.gov/lta/call-for-projects. Final LTA program recommendations will be brought to the CMAP Board and MPO Policy Committee in October. Applications received by the RTA will be reviewed and approved by its board in December.

 

 

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About CMAP

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) is the comprehensive regional planning organization for the northeastern Illinois counties of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will. By state and federal law, CMAP is responsible for producing the region's official, integrated plan for land use and transportation. The agency's innovative GO TO 2040 planning campaign develops and implements strategies to shape the region's transportation system and development patterns, while also addressing the natural environment, economic development, housing, education, human services, and other factors shaping quality of life. See www.cmap.illinois.gov for more information.

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