Illinois could do better by its military families, according to what the lieutenant governor has learned from a new survey. Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon is considering the Great Lakes Naval Air Station, Rock Island Arsenal and Scott Air Force Base, and the places supporting them. She says she “wanted to get a sense of what’s going on in these communities, what’s needed in these communities, what are the challenges that, particularly, military families face when they come here.”
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What she learned: it has to be easier for kids to ease into Illinois school systems, and for spouses in regulated fields such as the law to get jobs here. An economic impact study is already going on, she says. Simon says Illinois must position itself to come out on top the next time base realignment is considered, as the nation is more likely to cut back than to expand.