Wisconsin’s future looks bright!
The state ended Fiscal Year 2017 with a $579 million surplus. Rural communities have new opportunities to expand broadband and pursue increased sparsity aid for schools. And Wisconsin’s job news bodes well for the state’s workforce.
1. Another Budget Surplus for Wisconsin
Wisconsin ended Fiscal Year 2017 with a $579 million surplus, the second largest closing balance since 2000.
In response to the news, Governor Walker released the following statement:
“Our pro-growth, pro-taxpayer reforms are working, and this is evidenced by the fact we have ended every year with surplus since taking office. We will continue to be good stewards of the hard-working taxpayers’ money moving forward and continue to provide an accountable government. We are working and winning for Wisconsin.”
2. Governor Walker Advocates for Increased Sparsity Aid for Rural Schools
Governor Walker visited schools in Wausaukee, Cadott, and Belmont last week to announce his support for legislation that will increase Sparsity Aid for rural schools. The increased aid for rural schools is on top of the budget’s historic $11.5 billion investment in K-12 funding, increased support for High-Cost Transportation Aid in rural areas, and expanded efforts to provide broadband access statewide.
During his visits, Governor Walker acknowledged that rural communities face unique challenges, requiring additional support. The new bill provides an increase from $300 per pupil to $400 per pupil for districts that currently qualify for Sparsity Aid, and creates a second tier of Sparsity Aid by providing $100 per pupil for districts with 746-1000 pupils.
3. Additional $7.5 Million Now Available for Broadband Expansion
The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC) is now accepting applications for a second round of Broadband Expansion Grants for Fiscal Year 2018 that will extend $7.5 million to underserved areas of the state. This grant cycle provides additional funds recently approved in the state budget. Applications for the Broadband Expansion Grants are due at the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin by January 25, 2018.
4. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs
Foxconn Begins to Recruit for 13,000 Jobs
Foxconn began recruiting last week in an effort to fill 13,000 jobs. Foxconn participated in a career fair at Marquette University, providing students with the opportunity to explore the types of jobs that the company will bring to Wisconsin.
The company recently announced that its $10 billion major manufacturing factory will be located in the Village of Mount Pleasant. Construction is scheduled to begin by next summer.
Amazon Exceeds Job Expectations
— Governor Walker (@GovWalker) October 11, 2017
A recent article in the Milwaukee Business Journal reports that Amazon.com has created 4,188 jobs for its Kenosha facility since 2014, surpassing their promised job total of 1,250 more than three times over. In 2016, Amazon.com paid Kenosha employees a combined $93.2 million in taxable wages.
For article excerpts, click here.
Grover Chooses Wisconsin
Grover Corp., a leading manufacturer of piston rings and sealing rings, is expanding its operations in Milwaukee County by consolidating its facilities in Wisconsin and Texas, a project expected to create about 100 new jobs over the next five years.