Serving Crawford, Edwards, Lawrence, Richland, Wabash, Wayne and White Counties in Southeast Illinois
The Greater Wabash Regional Planning Commission’s Economic Development District consists of the following seven counties: Crawford, Edwards, Lawrence, Richland, Wabash, Wayne, and White.The office of the Commission is located at 10 West Main Street, P.O. Box 209, Albion, IL 62806. Greater Wabash Regional Planning Commission (GWRPC) was officially established in 1964 by the Edwards, Wabash and White County boards.Wayne County was annexed into the Commission in 1971, Lawrence County was added in October 1998, Richland County in December 1998, and Crawford County in 2001.As the assigned planning body of these counties, the Greater Wabash Regional Planning Commission is responsible for preparing and maintaining the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) for the region.GWRPC’s by-laws were first established on December 28, 1972.The current by-laws stand as amended by the Commission on the September 28, 2006. Governing Body The GWRPC board of commissioners is composed of six representatives from each county for a total of forty-two commissioners.The Board of Commissioners meets quarterly in March, June, September, and December and meetings are open to the public.Meeting notices are published in the county newspapers one week before the meetings. The Commission has seven standing committees which assist the board in managing administrative processes.The committees are as follows:Executive Committee , Personnel Committee, Finance Committee, Building Committee, Tourism Committee, Revolving Loan Fund Committee, CEDS Committee. The Commission’s General Activities GWRPC’s primary concern is the preparation and implementation of the District’s Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS).The Commission also provides numerous other services to the seven county region such as: planning, technical assistance, and project development in the areas of community and economic development, transportation, housing, land use, public facilities, and natural resources. The Commission provides grant writing and management for several programs such as the Community Development Assistance Program, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and EDA Public Works projects.Eligible projects include: public facilities (such as water and sewer), housing rehabilitation, recreation projects, and economic development. Another one of the many services that GWRPC provides includes a Revolving Loan Fund which was established in 1993 by EDA and Rural Development to assist local businesses and promote economic development.Loans are based on job creation or retention; applicants may be eligible for $7500 per job with a maximum loan of $100,000.Since 1993, GWRPC has loaned out over $2 million for projects totaling over $13 million.As a result of the revolving loan fund, there have been over 500 jobs created, retained, or saved within the seven county region. The Commission maintains an active association with regional economic development organizations such as Southeast Alliance of Illinois (SAIL) and Regional Economic Development Initiative (REDI) in addition to all local Economic Development Agencies.
Crawford, Lawrence, Wabash and White counties all border the State of Indiana on their eastern sides.The region’s center is located adjacent to a number of large metropolitan areas. The Greater Wabash Region is ideally located within a three to four hour commute to major metropolitan cities including Chicago, Illinois, Cincinnati, Ohio, Memphis, Tennessee, St. Louis, Missouri, and Louisville, Kentucky.Evansville, Indiana is located only 50 miles from the center of our region. According to the State of Illinois Opportunity Returns, the counties of Edwards, Wabash, Wayne, and White are considered to be in the Economic Development Region of Southern Illinois while the three remaining counties of Crawford, Lawrence and Richland lie within the Southeast Economic Development Region.
GWRPC serves as the Local Development District through Delta Regional Authority,DRA, for White County. For more information on DRA, click HERE.
GWRPC is a member of ILARC. The Illinois Association of Regional Councils (ILARC) was established in 1977 and serves as the recognized organization in Illinois representing regional planning agencies at the state level. Regional councils are formed by counties, cities and towns to service local governments and private citizens. The primary function of a regional councils is to study the needs and conditions of a region and to develop strategies which enhance the region's communities.
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