Work on a Wire in Illinois
Twenty-seven states support telework through legislation that encourages tax incentives, expansion of broadband coverage, or use by state employees. Illinois does not.
On December 7, 2010, we held a summit in Chicago. Business, public sector, and government leaders gathered to discuss the role of telecommuting in Illinois’ economic future.
At question was the state’s lack of telecommuting legislation, lagging behind official incentives in metro areas in states such as Minnesota, Oregon, Virginia and Georgia.
At that meeting, State Senator Pamela Althoff announced that a telework proclamation is in development for Illinois. The proclamation would officially recognize the importance of telework to the state and is the first step toward greater legislative action.
Attendees were also asked to sign a pledge to help increase by 500 the number of teleworkers in the Chicago Region.
Leaders from Ryan Inc., Cisco, Microsoft, and McDonald’s spoke at the morning’s event, sharing motivations behind their own corporate commitments to telecommuting.
Eve Pytel, Clean Air Counts, highlighted the impact of telecommuting on Chicago area traffic congestion and air quality. And I spoke, sharing the direct business benefits and underscoring the importance of telework to ensure the region's competitiveness.
During the event, we asked for feedback on a draft proclamation. But attendees were anxious to move beyond "announcements." They wanted media campaigns, they wanted metrics and accountability...they wanted action.