Executive Order Creating the Steering Committee for the Millennium Reserve
WHEREAS, the area referred to as Calumet region extends from Chicago’s southeast side and adjacent south suburbs and extends eastward across Lake and Porter Counties in Indiana;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core includes the Illinois portion of the Calumet region from 89th Street through the adjacent south suburbs and which connects with Millennium Park through the Burnham Lakefront Core;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core is a unique ecosystem in the Lake Michigan basin that includes Lake Calumet, Wolf Lake, the Calumet River, the Little Calumet River and the Grand Calumet River, as well as large wetlands and natural areas used by Illinois endangered and threatened species;
WHEREAS, the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement between the United States and Canada was amended in September 2012, with new provisions to address the nearshore environment, aquatic invasive species, habitat degradation, and the effects of climate change and continued focus on existing threats to people’s health and the environment of the Great Lakes;
WHEREAS, much of the natural area is owned by public agencies but is threatened by fragmentation and contamination and requires remediation, ecological restoration and coordinated ecological management;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core has a rich industrial heritage and associated labor culture that led to a richly diverse and vibrant immigrant community;
WHEREAS, residents of the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core have justifiable pride in their role in building the United States of America;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core, although still retaining the largest concentration of industrial jobs in the City of Chicago, now includes significant areas of existing or former industrial and manufacturing land that suffers from contamination, abandonment and fragmented ownership that stands in the way of economic revitalization in the area;
WHEREAS, the area within the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core boundary has been economically challenged by the decline of heavy industry and the loss of jobs and that there is an opportunity to create new jobs in the land conservation, brownfield remediation, and public recreation industries;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve: Calumet Core -served by major rail, highway and waterway transportation systems - is a center for intermodal freight shipping and the increased economic development that takes advantage of these transportation systems would greatly benefit the City of Chicago, the State of Illinois, and the region as a whole;
WHEREAS, the area within Millennium Reserve has an extensive but incomplete network of trails that creates significant transportation alternatives as well as attractive recreational opportunities for the residents of Chicago’s Southeast Side and beyond;
WHEREAS, the past 15 years has witnessed the creation of various plans for the Millennium Reserve region including GO TO 2040, Calumet Area Land Use Plan, Calumet Open Space Reserve Plan, Calumet Area Ecological Management Strategy, Chicago Southland’s Green Time Zone, South Suburban Calumet Area Open Space Initiative and complementary Indiana-based plans including the Marquette Plan and the 2040 Comprehensive Regional Plan;
WHEREAS, although local initiatives have emerged that have both generated and implemented these and other plans over the past 20 years, the region lacks a common action agenda that would unify the plans and partner organizations behind objectives common to all of these plans and to synergies between them;
WHEREAS, conservation and ecologically sustainable land use is inextricably linked to a robust economy and healthy communities, all of which contribute toward quality of life;
WHEREAS, the rich and intertwined cultural, industrial and natural history of the Millennium Reserve affords ample opportunities for school-based and interpretive education that can engage residents, visitors and future stewards;
WHEREAS, President Obama launched America’s Great Outdoors Initiative which seeks to re-focus federal conservation efforts by listening to conservation voices at the state and local level and then aligning federal programs behind those local efforts;
WHEREAS, the Obama Administration selected Millennium Reserve as an initiative behind which federal agencies would align and toward which the United States Fish and Wildlife Service has committed approximately two million dollars in federal funds toward ecological restoration;
WHEREAS, the Millennium Reserve Initiative was launched in 2012 by Governor Pat Quinn and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources with the support of Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the City of Chicago, with the vision of a new economy built on re-investment in the ecology, culture and economy of the Calumet region;
WHEREAS, the goal of Millennium Reserve is to transform a region in transition into a vibrant urban space, one that equally values and promotes healthy nature, industry and community;
WHEREAS, Millennium Reserve is intended to catalyze new action in the Calumet region by committing, focusing and leveraging existing resources and attracting new resources that will provide tangible benefits for this important region;
WHEREAS, Millennium Reserve recognizes the important, vital work underway or already completed by many individuals and organizations that creates the foundation for this initiative;
WHEREAS, Millennium Reserve spans a broad and complex physical and political geography and requires collaboration and shared leadership in order to leverage ideas and resources sufficient to accomplish shared goals and objectives;
WHEREAS, various state agencies have authority and resources to advance the objectives of Millennium Reserve, and
THEREFORE, I, Pat Quinn, Governor of the State of Illinois, pursuant to the supreme executive authority vested in me by Article V of the Illinois Constitution, do hereby order as follows:
There is hereby created a Millennium Reserve State Agency Task Force (hereinafter “Task Force”) and a Millennium Reserve Steering Committee (hereinafter “Steering Committee”).
- Task Force
- Department of Natural Resources
- Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity
- Department of Transportation
- Illinois Historic Preservation Agency
- Illinois Environmental Protection Agency
- Steering Committee
- Director, Department of Natural Resources, acting on behalf of the State of Illinois and representing Departments of Transportation, Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Illinois Historic Preservation Agency and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency;
- One representative each from the following landowning organizations: Chicago Park District, Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois International Port Authority, and Metropolitan Water Reclamation District;
- One representative from the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning;
- One representative from the South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association;
- Three representatives from the private business sector whose companies are active in the Millennium Reserve region;
- Three representatives from community groups active in the Millennium Reserve region or from organizations engaged in community development initiatives in the region;
- Three representatives from non-profit organizations whose primary focus is environmental protection and restoration, and/or outdoor recreation;
- One representative from a federal agency representing the President's America's Great Outdoors initiative;
- Two representatives from the City of Chicago;
- Three representatives from foundations which have an established track record in funding successful community, environmental, and/or economic development initiatives and
- Additional members may be appointed as necessary.
The Task Force shall consist of the Directors or Secretaries of the following State agencies:
The purpose of the Task Force shall be to both inform and consider the priorities and specific actions and initiatives of the Steering Committee. In full consideration of existing state priorities and available state resources, State agency task force members shall align and focus their resources and authorities to advance the work of the Millennium Reserve Initiative as identified through the Steering Committee work plan process. The Task Force Chair shall call Department leaders together regularly to advise and direct activities of the State towards this effort and demonstrate full force and commitment of the State of Illinois towards the effort. The Task Force shall be chaired by the Director of the Department of Natural Resources.
The Steering Committee shall have the structure, duties and powers set forth herein. Members of the Steering Committee shall serve four (4) year terms and shall be unpaid. Members shall represent organizations that are active in the Calumet region, and shall represent one or more of the following three primary areas of expertise and involvement: 1) environmental protection and restoration, and outdoor recreation; 2) economic development; and 3) community development. Members of the Steering Committee shall be appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the Governor and shall include the following individuals:
The Governor shall appoint a Chair and Vice-Chair, who shall oversee the Steering Committee’s engagement, determining the priorities, goals and work plans of Millennium Reserve.
The purpose of the Steering Committee is to serve as a central governing body that shall have leadership responsibilities for the overall execution of the Millennium Reserve Initiative.
- The Steering Committee shall develop overall goals, objectives, and priorities for action in the Millennium Reserve region relative to environmental restoration and remediation, outdoor recreation, economic development, and community development.
- The Steering Committee shall provide direction into the development and implementation of short- and long-term plans of work for the initiative.
- The Steering Committee shall identify specific projects of regional significance and recommend major policy initiatives that should be pursued by the State of Illinois and other partner organizations.
- The Steering Committee shall assist in identifying resources for undertaking these actions.
- The Steering Committee will make every effort to engage with Indiana-based representatives of like organizations to coordinate opportunities and priorities for the entire Calumet Core region.
The Steering Committee shall submit a preliminary report to the Governor within six months of its first meeting and regular reports every six months thereafter.
- Effective Date
This Executive Order shall take effect upon filing with the Secretary of State immediately upon its execution.
Governor of Illinois
Issued by the Governor:
Filed with the Secretary of State: