Former CAT CEO Weighs In On Illinois Economy

By Joe Bennett

Former CAT CEO Weighs In On Illinois Economy

August 11, 2011 Updated Aug 11, 2011 at 1:14 PM CDT

The U.S. and Columbia reached a trade agreement last month to relax tariffs between the two countries.

Caterpillar representatives applauded the effort that promises to save the heavy equipment maker hundreds of millions of dollars in costs a year.

Retired Cat C.E.O. Glen Barton says Illinois must do everything it can to attract business.

"I saw a poll yesterday that indicated that Illinois is on a death spiral and had fallen dramatically in the eyes of CEO's as a place across the country to do business, and that's bad for us. With the budget deficit we have, we can't afford to lose companies."

Barton was a guest speaker at a Kiwanis Club luncheon this afternoon honoring the organization's Citizen of the Year.