CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) -- An increasing number of companies asked Illinois to give them tax breaks to keep their jobs in the state as the recession eased in 2010, and the state agreed again and again.
Illinois committed to $272 million in incentives deals last year -- more than four times what it agreed to in 2006.
Gabriel Sanders is deputy director of the Office of Business Development at the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. He says as the economy improved companies started looking at options. He says the state needed to make the deals to compete.
But economists say the deals aren't good policy because most just pay companies to keep existing jobs in place rather than making new jobs. And some people believe the state made the deals out of desperation.
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