Monday, July 17, 2017

Wisconsin in focus: Calculating Wisconsin’s cost – and benefits – of landing Foxconn

By Watchdog News - July 17, 2017 at 07:52AM

Wisconsin State Journal: Calculating Wisconsin’s cost — and benefits — of landing Foxconn

What’s it worth to Wisconsin to become the U.S. hub for a global company with 1 million employees and $136 billion in annual revenue?

Answer: It depends on what the state will gain vs. the size of the public investment over time.

As Foxconn Technology Group investigates where it may build a next-generation production plant in the United States, Wisconsin is competing with a small number of states on factors such as physical location, transportation logistics, workforce skills, research and development expertise and supply chain potential.

Wisconsin must yet compete on a package of financial incentives, such as tax credits and worker training grants, that may fall between $2 billion to more than $3 billion over two decades or more.

Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: Bill would repeal prevailing wage law for Wisconsin road workers 

Wisconsin road projects could be designed and built by the same firm and their workers could be paid less, under new GOP legislation aimed at lowering the costs of highway construction.

The state faces long-term shortfalls in its roads fund, and a disagreement over how to pay for bridge and highway projects has held up the state budget.

To help address that, a group of GOP lawmakers introduced legislation this month that they said would help to close the funding gap by lowering costs.

The bill would repeal the state’s “prevailing wage” law requiring certain minimum pay levels for construction workers. It would also clear the way in Wisconsin for design-build firms that both draw plans for highway projects and construct them.

Post-Crescent: Across Wisconsin, a steep increase in kids separated from addict parents

Mary Brown waited until her kids left for school, then grabbed a rope and stood in the bathroom with awful thoughts in her head.

Would her children be better off without a heroin addict for a mother? The question nagged at her mind.

But she dropped the rope and picked up the phone to call her mother, setting off a series of events that involved getting treatment and temporarily losing custody of her kids.

“I just broke down,” she said. “I needed help.”

Brown didn’t know it then, but the 36-year-old Appleton mom would become part of a statewide trend.

 The number of children separated from their parents by county authorities has climbed across Wisconsin to its highest level in nearly a decade.