August 4, 2017

Volume 3 Issue 17

State Representative Janel Brandtjen 

By now, everyone has heard that Foxconn, a huge manufacturer of Apple iPhones and other tech products has announced their intention to invest $10 billion to build a manufacturing facility in southeastern Wisconsin. The facility will manufacture state-of-the-art liquid crystal display (LCD) screens which will be used for the next generation of television sets. The factory will employ 3,000 to 10,000 people and will certainly create thousands of support jobs in the area as well. The State of Wisconsin will be providing a package of tax incentives and infrastructure support that may be as much as $3 billion. Governor Walker has called a special session of the legislature to debate and approve the package. The non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau (LFB) has provided a detailed analysis of the proposal. The State of Wisconsin also released a fact sheet outlining the plan. Lastly, a report done by an outside firm hired by Foxconn issued an analysis of the economic impact of the project. While the study paints a rosy picture, the potential is there for huge employment gains.

Although I am cautiously optimistic, I can tell you that Governor Walker is taking every precaution to assure that the State of Wisconsin does not pay for jobs and development that do not materialize. Also, it is my understanding that environmental regulations are being streamlined, not overlooked. Contrary to what is being reported, the changes would speed up the process of getting the proper permits.  I remain hopeful that in the future, other entrepreneurs would be able to enjoy a faster permit process.

It should come as no surprise that the effort has already been highly criticized from those on the other side of the aisle. I can assure you that the project will create a significant number of jobs and provide an extremely large economic boost to the region. As a matter of fact this investment is the largest Greenfield investment made by a foreign-based company in US history.

The 2017-19 Budget

I was hopeful that we would have already finished the budget by the end of July.  Besides the transportation portion of the budget and a few minor adjustments, the budget is about ready. Unlike the federal government that shuts down after the budget deadline, the State of Wisconsin reverts to the spending levels from the previous budget. However the budget does need to be finalized fairly soon. Having that said, the State of Wisconsin cannot let the Foxconn deal slip through their fingers.

New Income Limits for the Statewide Choice Program

The Racine and Milwaukee School Choice Programs require families to be below 300% of the federal poverty level (FPL) to qualify for those choice programs. The Wisconsin Statewide Choice Program requires families to be under 185% of the FPL to participate in the program. The original architect of school choice, Dr. Howard Fuller, points out that a single mother of two making $38,000 a year in West Allis, Beloit or Wausau is "too rich" to qualify for school choice. I believe that more families around the state should have access to these programs and the income limits should be consistent. 

Patrolman John S.Taylor

Forty years ago this coming Sunday, Patrolman John S.Taylor of the Menomonee Falls Police Department was killed in the line of duty. There will be a Rededication Service Noon this Sunday at John S. Taylor Park named in his honor. Please join us at N87 W16530 Appleton Ave. 



God Bless Wisconsin!



                                           National Night Out-Menomonee Falls




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