Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel this week announced agreements with two McCormick Place Convention Center labor unions, solidifying reforms enacted last year.

The various reforms affecting work rules were passed by the Legislature last year to improve the convention center’s competitiveness by cutting exhibitors’ costs.

The legislation also allowed the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, which owns the convention center, to refinance its debt.

Some of the reforms were challenged by the unions in a federal lawsuit. Rulings in favor of the union had raised concerns that conventions would flee to more affordable competitors.

“McCormick Place is a cornerstone of Illinois’ economy,” Quinn said. “These historic reforms will save exhibitors money by giving them the flexibility they need and help to attract even more shows to Illinois.”

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