McCormick Place Bill not a Slam Dunk

CHICAGO—Illinois Governor Pat Quinn may not sign into law a bill that is intended to make McCormick Place, home of the annual Graph Expo and PRINT industry shows, more competitive with other convention halls around the country, CBS Channel 2 reported.

Much of the controversy surrounding the bill is centered on James Reilly, a consultant on the changes necessary to bring McCormick in line with other national venues. According to CBS 2, Reilly wrote a set of recommendations that, among other things, calls for a trustee. And Illinois lawmakers want to make Reilly that trustee, becoming the McCormick Place CEO, which could represent a conflict of interest.

Some of the recommendations would be a welcomed change for printing industry exhibitors, as they take a bite out of labor costs: new work rules, reduced overtime, more freedom for exhibitors to do things themselves. Gov. Quinn promised a quick and thorough review of the bill before putting his name to it.

In a related development, the Graphic Arts Show Co. (GASC) has announced a deal where it will pay unlimited machinery handling costs for Graph Expo 2010 exhibitors. The Graph Expo 2010 Exhibitor Machinery Handling Incentive covers the unloading of machinery from inbound carriers at the show site and delivery to the booth, one-time spotting at the time of unloading, and freight movement from booth to dock and loading of machinery onto outbound carriers at the close of the show.