(20 ILCS 655/6) (from Ch. 67 1/2, par. 610)
    Sec. 6. Powers and Duties of Department.
    (A) General Powers. The Department shall administer this Act and shall have the following powers and duties:
        (1) To monitor the implementation of this Act and
    
submit reports evaluating the effectiveness of the program and any suggestions for legislation to the Governor and General Assembly by October 1 of every year preceding a regular Session of the General Assembly and to annually report to the General Assembly initial and current population, employment, per capita income, number of business establishments, dollar value of new construction and improvements, and the aggregate value of each tax incentive, based on information provided by the Department of Revenue, for each Enterprise Zone.
        (2) To promulgate all necessary rules and regulations
    
to carry out the purposes of this Act in accordance with The Illinois Administrative Procedure Act.
        (3) To assist municipalities and counties in
    
obtaining Federal status as an Enterprise Zone.
    (B) Specific Duties:
        (1) The Department shall provide information and
    
appropriate assistance to persons desiring to locate and engage in business in an enterprise zone, to persons engaged in business in an enterprise zone and to designated zone organizations operating there.
        (2) The Department shall, in cooperation with
    
appropriate units of local government and State agencies, coordinate and streamline existing State business assistance programs and permit and license application procedures for Enterprise Zone businesses.
        (3) The Department shall publicize existing tax
    
incentives and economic development programs within the Zone and upon request, offer technical assistance in abatement and alternative revenue source development to local units of government which have enterprise Zones within their jurisdiction.
        (4) The Department shall work together with the
    
responsible State and Federal agencies to promote the coordination of other relevant programs, including but not limited to housing, community and economic development, small business, banking, financial assistance, and employment training programs which are carried on in an Enterprise Zone.
        (5) In order to stimulate employment opportunities
    
for Zone residents, the Department, in cooperation with the Department of Human Services and the Department of Employment Security, is to initiate a test of the following 2 programs within the 12 month period following designation and approval by the Department of the first enterprise zones: (i) the use of aid to families with dependent children benefits payable under Article IV of the Illinois Public Aid Code, General Assistance benefits payable under Article VI of the Illinois Public Aid Code, the unemployment insurance benefits payable under the Unemployment Insurance Act as training or employment subsidies leading to unsubsidized employment; and (ii) a program for voucher reimbursement of the cost of training zone residents eligible under the Targeted Jobs Tax Credit provisions of the Internal Revenue Code for employment in private industry. These programs shall not be designed to subsidize businesses, but are intended to open up job and training opportunities not otherwise available. Nothing in this paragraph (5) shall be deemed to require zone businesses to utilize these programs. These programs should be designed (i) for those individuals whose opportunities for job-finding are minimal without program participation, (ii) to minimize the period of benefit collection by such individuals, and (iii) to accelerate the transition of those individuals to unsubsidized employment. The Department is to seek agreement with business, organized labor and the appropriate State Department and agencies on the design, operation and evaluation of the test programs.
    A report with recommendations including representative comments of these groups shall be submitted by the Department to the county or municipality which designated the area as an Enterprise Zone, Governor and General Assembly not later than 12 months after such test programs have commenced, or not later than 3 months following the termination of such test programs, whichever first occurs.
(Source: P.A. 97-905, eff. 8-7-12.)