Motorola Mobility to cut 500 jobs in Chicago

Motorola Mobility to cut 500 jobs in Chicago

Motorola Mobility’s layoffs will leave 500 Chicago workers without jobs in a state that impedes economic growth.

Motorola Mobility has announced plans to cut 500 jobs from its Chicago workforce, reducing its Chicago headcount by 25 percent. This announcement comes one day after The Kraft Heinz Co. revealed its plans to cut 700 jobs from its Northfield, Illinois, facility.

The Motorola layoffs will likely affect jobs at its Merchandise Mart headquarters, and are a part of the company’s plan to decrease its workforce by 3,200 non-manufacturing jobs.

Motorola struck a deal with the state of Illinois in 2011, resulting in $100 million in tax breaks over 10 years. After firing workers in 2012, the amount of tax breaks was reduced, but the company was still receiving millions in tax credits as late as last year. It’s possible that these additional layoffs will lead to further reductions in tax breaks.

The job cuts by Kraft and Motorola highlight Illinois’ urgent need for a stronger local economy so that the state can better weather the ongoing turbulence in both blue-collar and white-collar industries. Illinois is having a tough time keeping jobs even when special tax deals are involved, as in the cases of Motorola and Mitsubishi. The state must compete for every job in every industry so that when there are layoffs in one area, there is new hiring in another area. But the state’s current anti-growth policies stand in the way.

The Land of Lincoln needs a global, reform-driven agenda for economic development, And even though Motorola’s white-collar corporate job cuts are in the headlines, Illinois must also embrace reforms that can help turn around its manufacturing sector, the backbone of the state.

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