Hancock County, Illinois has a staggering 9 percent unemployment rate, and an initiative to reverse that troubling trend continues.
Local agencies and county officials met for a second annual economic development summit last night.
The initiative focuses on creating jobs and encouraging people to shop locally.
Officials say if they don't take steps now to save their economy, their area will continue to decline.
"The trends we've seen in the past. We're losing an average of one thousand people every decade and that averages out to one hundred every year. We've been losing jobs at a rapid rate and we've been losing young people," said Jerry Bartell, the chairman of the Hancock County economic development committee.
The county has also raised nearly $90,000 to fund a full time economic development director position.
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