Rushville, IL – Quincy attorney Hubert Staff is the first chairman of the new Western Illinois Economic Development Authority. The 13-county group organized this week and has begun writing its by-laws. It will be able to issue up to $250-million dollars in bonds to help start regional economic development projects. Macomb's Mayor Mick Wisslead is the McDonough County representative. He says the authority will work closely with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. The state will fund the group with $750,000 in seed money to help get it started while it works toward where it can issue bonds.