CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - A health insurance company is making a hefty $5.5 million investment into Carbondale, Illinois.
The Centene Corporation is bringing its locally branded IlliniCare Health to town, along with 300 plus jobs.
Construction for the business is underway now. The 80,000 sq. foot facility will set up shop where K’s Merchandise used to be.
IlliniCare Health focuses on providing affordable Medicaid health care services for its members.
The company was also selected to provide health services for youth in care and youth formerly in care of the Department of Children and Family Service (DCFS).
This statewide program will go into effect April 1, 2019.
Carbondale Chamber President Jennifer Olson is hopeful the company will bost the local economy with meaningful opportunities for full-time work.
“I would say that we are challenged here with unemployment,” Olson said. “We have a wonderful university but we need places for them to go to work. If we get somebody like illinicare and they do find they work for the space here, then that will help us advocate for other businesses.”
Olson said IlliniCare’s parent company, Centene, is known for investing in local communities by sponsoring events.
The company is also considering ways to remove barriers for folks looking for full-time employment, something Olson said she hopes will entice more people to live and work in town.
“It’s absolutely important that we retain people, some of these positions require only a high school education, and so if we can have the kind of businesses in our area where people can still work their way up through the levels that’s really important,” Olson said.
No word yet on when IlliniCare will begin its hiring process.