1314 West Walnut,

Jacksonville, Illinois 62650

Off: 217-245-9504

Fax: 217-245-2350  

Email: ecc@elmcity.org

Web page: www.elmcity.org

Work and Independence for people with disabilities.






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Welcome to Elm City Center!

Providing services to people with disabilities since 1959

A Community Based Agency Providing Work, Vocational, Residential and Social Services

  • We help people with disabilities be independent and live in the community.
  • We serve over 200 people a day.
  • We have over 100,000 square feet of production space with 9 docks and over $500,000 of shrink-wrap packaging equipment. Our customers are in retail stores through out North America. We can provide specialized packaging in almost any volume.
  • We have offer certified confidential shredding for documents.
  • We have residential programs throughout Jacksonville.
  • We have been nationally accredited by  CARF since 1972.



One of the non-budgetary items we need to focus on is long-term planning. Long-term being 2-3 years at best. There are many recent articles debating the actual worth of strategic planning. The previous ideas were have long term plans of 5-10 years and short term versions of under 5 years. Consensus seems to come back to broad overarching 5 year plan with some detailed short term concepts that that remain very flexible on an annual basis. Major 5 years may be ok in a stable financial environment, but we are not there. Illinois’ finances are not going to stabilize for quite some time. We still need to decide how we will prepare our business just as any other company does.


In any case we need to step into this direction. The first step we are taking is the traditional SWOT analysis which looks at Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. No matter how we do this CARF and state regs all expect some type of planning process. Simply responding to whatever comes our way is not a good option. We really need to spend some serious time looking at options and picking what works.  

Click here to go to Survey Monkey SWOT form -->

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-PEoOOUcdKFo/AAAAAAAAAAI/AAAAAAAAAAA/3rn8CE2mm8I/s0-c-k-no-ns/photo.jpg Click here to go to the ECC website SWOT form -->

On September 11, we held our 14th annual Golf Outing at our neighbors: Northridge Hills Golf Course.  Northridge is an executive nine hole course with rolling terrain and challenging greens. Weather looked bleak early that morning, then by noon the sun was out and it could not have been better conditions. We have always kept this event a small outing that can be done in about 2 1/2 hours on a Friday afternoon. We are extremely grateful for all the local teams who have been part of this event for several years. Northridge provided brats/burgers and all the trimmings. And staff brought some extremely good cheese cakes, cookies, and other desert favorites.  This year all the income from the event is being used to provide over 200 high quality Elm City shirts everyone.

On August 20, 2015, Governor Rauner signed a proclamation declaring September 13-19, 2015 as ‘Direct Service Professional Recognition Week’ to honor all the people in Illinois to provide DSP services to the people we see every day. A full sized copy of the proclamation is hanging in the front entrance of the Walnut Admin area. The role of DSP positions is very important to what we do on a daily basis. We a large meal for all staff catered by  Bogie's Black Tie Catering. Special packs were delivered to all shifts for the residential staff who could not make it to the day event. We had so much food we were able to easily cover the main event and two more meals. Great food for all at Elm City to thank all the people we work with who provide DSP services. Thank you to all and keep up the great work
The Elm City lawn crew is putting in some serious cutting time this summer.  We maintain the acres of grounds at the former JDC, the ball fields for Jacksonville Area Baseball at the American Legion/JDC fields, the Elm City campus and our homes. The non-stop rain early in the summer made for non-stop grass and soft ground, not to mention odd cutting times between the rains. Later, the heat indexes hitting over 100 created a tough job. This year has included a lot of tree limb removal after some heavy storms. They do a great job.
It's another season and the Elm City tent is making the rounds. Over ten years ago we purchased this tent as a way to give back to the community. We provide the tent to community groups for various events. Over the years it has been at golf tournaments, youth football,  and many other community events. So far in 2015, it has been at the Downtown Celebration, 4th of July Blast, Bragging Rights BBQ, Duncan Manor Ice Cream socials, Chamber of Commerce picnics, main stage at the Morgan County Fair, and the PAWS fundraiser. We are back at Duncan Manor on September 24 for the next event

As of September 18, 2015, Illinois still does not have a finalized state budget. Governor Rauner has said he wants his Turnaround Agenda approved before he will discuss budget items. Speaker Madigan refuses to discuss any items he considers to be not directly related to the budget unless a budget is approved. Federal Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman has ruled that the state must pay Medicaid providers for services they are providing. It has made for some very odd planning to figure out what will happen in the future. Elm City continues to do our job everyday as we always have. There are many community providers who have been put into a financial bind and have spent their reserves to operate. Whatever your political ideals may be, please contact your local state senator and representative and tell them what your think should be done. Our trade association, IARF, has released two important documents that stress the impact of entering FY16 without a budget deal on children and adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and mental illnesses receiving community-based services.

IARF Press Release and Information Materials

1.    IARF FY16 Budget Impasse Impact Statements - details the number of consumers and staff in community-based agencies who will be impacted by a budget impasse. Furthermore, it provides a timeline for the dismantling of community-based ID/DD and mental health services and supports – layoffs, closure notifications, termination of services, etc. IARF staff have shared this information with key legislators and staff, administration officials, and various other stakeholder groups.

2.    IARF Press Release – FY16 Budget Impasse – similar to the impact statement document above, this press release highlights the consequences of entering FY16 without a budget deal in place. At least 25,000 developmentally disabled and mentally ill children and adults stand to lose services, while nearly 5,000 of their support staff in community-based agencies will lose their jobs. Both of these figures are based on IARF responses only and are an understatement compared to the system as a whole.

3.    IARF Budget Impasse Survey Q&A – during a survey follow-up call several questions were asked by IARF member agencies. Attached are those questions with answers from staff. These are for your reference.


The remodeling of our two most recent homes is done.  One HOME IS100% accessible by people in wheel chairs. The other will simply be a regular home. Both homes:

  • Are large, converted duplexes with four bedrooms. 

  • Have laundry facilities with washer and dryer

  • Each home will have 24 hour staff to assist with whatever needs to be done.

  • Are in nice, well maintained residential neighborhoods.

We are on the market for two more homes that meet the CILA requirements. By the time this is all done we will have 6 group homes and over 20 apartments throughout Jacksonville. We have been talking with DDD Transitions about people we know who moved from JDC and want to return to Jacksonville. We are also open to people on Puns, part of Ligas. or simply looking to transition from home to independence.


This home is 100% wheelchair accessible with very large bathroom, roll in showers, an extra large kitchen, a covered outdoor deck, and large living areas. SEE SHILOH DETAILS


This home has an extra large kitchen, enclosed breezeway, two living rooms, a three car garage, and many closets. SEE WESTFAIR DETAILS

If you know someone with a disability who is looking for a residential setting or you simply want more information contact Julie Pikert or Cyndy Claussen at 217-245-9504.


Buildings often have a past that is very different from current operations. Believe it or not, our Admin building used to be the home for WJJY-TV in 1969-1971 which served Jacksonville, Springfield, and Quincy. WJJY-TV was the most powerful TV station in the nation and one of the tallest structures in the hemisphere.  On Columbus Day, 2014 we were visited by J. Mitch Hopper who was one of the first employees and worked with Chief Engineer, Harold Eskew in mounting equipment, running wires under the control room floor, installing many of the thousands of connectors. He also installed the basic telephone system we still use today. He stayed with the station as a staff engineer/technician and ran many of the on-air shifts as well as being the primary film editor. He has a website: http://www.brainmist.com/wjjy_tv/wjjy_tv.htm that talks about the station’s history and how they went out of business. Their studio was located where our lunch room currently exists.  The real floor is 3 feet below the current floor which we raised when we built the lunch room several years ago. The engineering room is now a large meeting room. The base of the relay tower that sent the pictures to the transmittal tower in Bluffs still exists on our property. Years later, the Bluffs transmission tower crashed down during an extremely heavy ice storm. Elm City bought the TV property and moved in after it had been empty for several years. Will Elm City still be here 45 years from now? What do you think people will say about us then?

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Elm City Center

An equal opportunity employer.

Revised - 10/5/2015