Monday, November 09, 2015

UIS Economic Outlook Survey finds state budget impasse tops concerns of Sangamon County employers

The Fall 2015 Economic Outlook Survey, conducted by the University of Illinois Springfield and the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce, finds that a majority of local employers think that the state budget impasse is one of the biggest challenges facing them over the next twelve months.

The challenge is dampening expectations with employers reporting positive expectations for their business and sector, but not for the overall Sangamon County economy. In fact, the decrease in positive expectations (-22 points) of the overall Sangamon County economy is the largest decrease since fall 2012.

“It is clear that local employers are concerned about the state budget impasse,” said Ashley Kirzinger, director of the UIS Survey Research Office. “While local businesses are still reporting positive expectations for the next year, these expectations are clearly moderated by what is happening in the capitol building.”

When asked specifically about the role of the state budget impasse on their business, 54 percent of local employers report that the state budget impasse is having a negative effect on their gross revenue and sales, 51 percent report that it is having a negative impact on their profitability and 46.1 percent report it is having a negative effect on the overall status of their business.

“While the results are disappointing, we’re not surprised given the lack of a budget deal at the State Capitol, said Chris Hembrough, president and CEO of the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce. “Our spring survey revealed our best results in eight years. However, after nearly five months with no state budget, it’s understandable that while the majority of employers are still optimistic about the future, they’ve scaled back their expectations, at least until a budget deal has been completed.”

The fall survey results are from 263 local organizations who were contacted between September 28 and October 15, 2015 by interviewers at the UIS Survey Research Office. The margin of error for this project is plus or minus 5.4 percentage points. For more information on the methodology and the full report, please visit the UIS Survey Research Office website at

Questions regarding the survey may be directed to Ashley Kirzinger, director of the UIS Survey Research Office, at 217/206-7956 or

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