Wisconsin Development News (click to read online)
Ken Harwood
Advocating for Wisconsin
Ken  [at] KenHarwood.com
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Wisconsin governor in La Crosse promoting business development

An office of Rural Prosperity for Wisconsin could do a lot for small businesses and towns to become more successful. 

Governor Tony Evers has proposed such an office, and the idea is being endorsed by the secretary of the WisconsIn Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). 

Both the governor and WEDC secretary Melissa Hughes spoke on Monday at the 48th annual meeting of LADCO, the La Crosse Area Development Corporation.

Evers said the state is in ‘an excellent position’ to start the 2020’s in a ‘good place,’ if there’s cooperation, but he said the governor cannot “wave a magic wand” to make things happen....

...Hughes, a former executive with Organic Valley of La Farge, says like WEDC, a prosperity office could be a ‘one-stop shop’ to steer a project toward completion....

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Ken Notes: Sure he can, he just needs a senate and assembly to make the trick work. An office of Rural Prosperity would work well with bipartisan support so the question is how do we get there and for the record many of the pieces are already in place. Most counties already have ED Directors and staff and are a "one stop shop". There are also regional ED offices that cover the entire state. The state could match the local and county contributions to these existing efforts add some state benefits and task them with your Rural Agenda.

PRESTO! An office of Rural Prosperity for Wisconsin...

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Economic development head Melissa Hughes looks to take agency in new direction
he Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.’s fourth CEO, Melissa “Missy” Hughes, said Monday her first four months have been spent developing a new direction for the state’s top economic development agency.

The shift in direction, which Hughes and Democratic Gov. Tony Evers have said entails a greater focus on small businesses and rural communities, rather than on controversial deals like the one for the massive Foxconn project, is reflective of Hughes as a departure from previous leaders of the embattled WEDC since its 2011 creation...


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Ken Notes: Read this... READ THIS... If you read nothing else read this article. Share this article. You can comment on, argue about, even blame WEDC but not if you have not read this article.

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WEDC CEO: Foxconn contract renegotiations ‘up in the air’

MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) – In a wide-ranging interview, Melissa ‘Missy’ Hughes, the new CEO of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, told CBS 58 that the Evers administration is, “absolutely” rooting for Foxconn’s success and that the state is ready to help the company achieve its goals.

Hughes took over the position in 2019 following the departure of her predecessor, Mark Hogan. The former Organic Valley executive inherited the Foxconn project and hit the ground running when it came to the development.

“My goal is to come in and understand it,” Hughes said in an interview with CBS 58 at WEDC’s Madison headquarters. “To learn what Foxconn’s vision is and to help them as their business plans evolve, to make sure that the project and the contract that WEDC is responsible for are all aligned and working together.”...

FYI:

Fiat Chrysler, Foxconn Team Up for Electric Vehicles

NEXVOO® Partner to be Foxconn for Qualcomm-Based Unified Communications Products

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Ken Notes: Let me know if I am wrong here, but Hughes seems to be bringing a business mindset to Foxconn and WEDC. I hope this continues and gets some bipartisan support (I can dream can`t I). Can I also mention that Foxconn just entered into partnerships with automotive and tech giants to manufacture new products. I included a few of these articles even though none mention Wisconsin.

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The Gialamas Company







 “Founded in 1976 by George and Candy Gialamas, The Gialamas Company specializes in Class A Commercial Real Estate. Old Sauk Trails Park, is one of the most prestigious business parks in Wisconsin; containing numerous office buildings supplemented by restaurants, hotels, financial institutions, a childcare facility and a walking/jogging trail system....
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Stakeholders see possibility in Wisconsin governor`s new focus on rural prosperity
The newly created Office of Rural Prosperity can boost economic opportunities outside of Wisconsin`s big cities — if it helps advance issues like housing, broadband and other challenges faced by workers and entrepreneurs in small communities.

That`s according to those who work in economic development for small cities, who this week offered reactions to the announcement of the new office by Gov. Tony Evers in his State of the State speech.

As part of a slate of policies aimed at helping Wisconsin farmers and rural communities, the governor said he`d work with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. (WEDC) to establish the office, which he called a "one-stop shop for folks to navigate state programs and resources tailored to rural communities, businesses and workers."

Speaking on WPR`s "The Morning Show," WEDC CEO Missy Hughes said her agency`s role will be "to be the funnel for those communities, so that they can access all the different resources" that exist for rural communities.
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Ken Notes: Also regarding the loss of dairy farms in the state please remember we are now milking MORE cows than ever before. You cannot talk about loosing dairy farms without talking about the factory farms that are replacing them...

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Open house on Oscar Mayer Special Area Plan set for Thursday

Madison residents will have the chance to weigh in on the future of the former Oscar Mayer property and surrounding area on the north side at a public meeting Thursday. 

For nearly 100 years, the Oscar Mayer plant at 910 Mayer Ave. was in operation on the north side and served as an integral part of the neighborhood’s character. 

“While its closure had a devastating impact to many, it created an opportunity and was the catalyst for reconsidering the future of an entire industrial corridor in close proximity to downtown, equipped with a strong regional transportation network, and significant building infrastructure assets,” according to a draft of the Oscar Mayer Special Area Plan. ..

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`More bars than grocery stores`: Milwaukee named one of the best places for a big trip in 2020
MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee has been named on the best places to visit for a big trip in 2020, according to Thrillist.

Calling Milwaukee the "Brew City" and "City of Festivals," Thrillist named it one of the top 20 best places for a big trip in 2020...
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Ken Notes:What a stupid title, EVERY city in Wisconsin has more bars than grocery stores. Wait, that makes every city in Wisconsin a great place to visit -- which is true... Lets take a note from Iowa, when the DNC is in town we can not afford to make any mistakes and this will require a bipartisan effort. Let`s all pledge now not to vote for any politician who says anything disparaging about the State or Milwaukee during this time. Share this. #Wisconsinisforeveryone...

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New research tool offers improved method for studying microbes
UW-Madison scientists have created a tool to improve the efficiency of microbial research, a quickly growing field that could lead to new medical therapies.

Interest in microbial interactions has risen in recent decades as clinical studies have illuminated the complex relationships between human health and colonies of microbes within the body. More than 100 trillion bacteria live in the human gut alone, and these microbes are involved with numerous diseases including inflammatory disorders, cancers, depression and diabetes.

The tool’s lead inventors, Ophelia Venturelli and Philip Romero, are both researchers in the university’s biochemistry department and have applied for a patent on their invention. In the meantime, WARF is looking for commercial partners to aid in the development process.

Late last year, their team was announced as winners of the WARF Innovation Award, which came with a $10,000 cash prize...

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Ken Notes: WARF and the University Research Park will be my guests on Development Matters March 14th. These two independent extension of the UW are bringing world class research and development to Wisconsin. They are now focused on entrepreneurship, venture capital, and growing new companies (not to mention bacteria) as well.

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Are we fulfilling the Wisconsin Idea?
One of the reasons I — and I am sure some of my peers — chose UW as a primetime undergraduate destination was due to the university’s commitment to the impacts of education outside of the classroom, lab, and discussion section. Our thriving student org population, rapidly evolving city surrounding campus, and seemingly never-ending opportunities to do research or join unique projects was more than enough to pull my bright-eyed-and-bushy-tailed freshman self to Madison.

These attributes are a partial reflection of the ‘Wisconsin Idea,’ a valued principle among the UW system that has been in existence since initially introduced by our school’s then-president, Charles Van Hise, in 1905.

“I shall never be content until the beneficent influence of the University reaches every family of the state.”  This statement led to a greater relationship between UW and state government, and eventually a slew of initiatives, research and development, and statewide projects orchestrated by Badger students and faculty. ...

“I shall never be content until the beneficent influence of the University reaches every family of the state.”

UW President Charles Van Hise in 1905

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Ken Notes: We are close. I have a very special radio show coming up on this topic March 14th, watch for details. I especially like the work of WARF, the Nelson Institute, URP, Graaskamp Center for Real Estate, and the UW Division of Extension. I should add that I am not a huge fan of the UW Extension name change but the work they do is great...

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Wisconsin Could Be First State To Expand Opportunity Zone Tax Incentives

Federal Community Development Program Created To Spur Development In Urban, Rural Areas

President Donald Trump touted opportunity zones during the State of the Union Address on Tuesday to improve low-income rural and urban communities.

The community development program was established by Congress with bipartisan support in 2017 to encourage long-term investments in under-developed areas across the county.

In Wisconsin, a bill is working its way through the state Legislature to make the program more enticing to investors. But critics say tax incentives for the wealthy could lead to poorer people being displaced from their neighborhoods.

Wisconsin has 120 opportunity zones that were chosen by former Gov. Scott Walker and certified by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

...Under state Senate Bill 440, Wisconsin could become one of the first states to give even larger tax breaks to the investors who are the primary beneficiaries of this tax policy. ..


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Ken Notes: For those still confused about Opportunity Zones, my guest on last weeks Development Matters Radio Show, Joe Shumow Lawyer  Instructor at UWMadison, gave one of the clearest definitions I have ever heard. it is at the end of hour one and I will pull it out as a special podcast soon.

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Assembly Ag Committee passes bills to help farmers
MADISON – Earlier this week, multiple bills were introduced by the state assembly created to help farmers, rural Wisconsin and the state’s stressed agricultural economy. These bills were passed out of the Assembly Ag Committee as a first step.

“As a general agriculture organization, we see a lot of potential in these bills,” said Wisconsin Farm Bureau President Joe Bragger. “We appreciate the attention that our legislators and our governor are directing toward rural Wisconsin. If we want our state to continue to prosper in agricultural commodities, we need the rubber to hit the road.”

Two of the bills brought forth by the state assembly originated from Gov. Tony Evers who requested a special session to address rural Wisconsin issues.

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Ken Notes: May be far too little far too late, and do not get me wrong I appreciate the effort. But without significant intervention, the small farm is not going to survive in Wisconsin. Currently small farmers are not making any profit, so a tax cut does nothing. Finally remember that many farm organization must advocate for CAFO and more industrialized agriculture because this segment represents a large sector of their membership and an even larger percentage of their revenue stream.

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Wisconsin Assembly To Vote On GOP Tax Cut, Dairy Bills

In Likely Final Assembly Votes For 2020, Lawmakers Will Attempt Another Gubernatorial Veto Override

State Assembly lawmakers are scheduled to use what’s expected to be their final day of work in 2020 to vote on a GOP-backed income tax cut and a package of bills aimed at helping Wisconsin dairy farmers.

The tax cut proposal, which is passed the state Senate early Thursday morning, would cost the state about $248 million annually and save Wisconsin income tax filers an average of $106 per year. In addition to increasing the standard income tax deduction for all types of filers, the proposal would use about $45 million annually to exempt some items from businesses’ personal property taxes and pay down about $100 million in state debt.

If approved by the Assembly, the bill would move to Gov. Tony Evers’ desk for his signature. The fate of the plan with the Democratic governor is uncertain, as his office has issued statements critical of the deal...
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Ken Notes: If school (i.e. Property) taxes increase are we really saving any money here. I like the idea of working on Dairy exports, but the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin (Former Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board) has far more understanding and tools than WEDC and both are working with some of the CAFO`s that are driving small farms out of business. Finally the tax cuts on land and health insurance would actually help the CAFO`s more than the small farmer. Why you ask, because farmers are not making any profits to deduct expenses from, but you guessed it CAFO`s are.

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Artis Real Estate Investment Trust

Madison Office Lifestyle Portfolio is a portfolio of 16, Class A amenity-rich office properties ranging from 14,000 square feet to over 300,000 square feet in size, and is home to over 130 tenants.


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State officials tour rural businesses in Wisconsin to address workforce development
CRANDON, Wis. (WAOW) -- Several state officials toured rural businesses across Wisconsin on Friday.

This comes after Governor Tony Evers announced he was making a push to support and enhance rural communities and the rural workforce.

"Wisconsin only does well only when all of Wisconsin does well," said Joel Brennan, Wisconsin Department of Administration Secretary. "Our competition isn`t amongst one part of the state versus another or necessarily amongst our region, we`re competing globally. We need to do what we can as a state to ensure that they can be as successful as possible."...
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Ken Notes: "Wisconsin only does well only when all of Wisconsin does well,", I agree and hope we can work together on solutions. I still wat to advocate for exponentially expanding our apprenticeship programs in the State. We have some real opportunity here...

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Explainer: What`s going on with the Madison Public Market?

It’s 2020, and the Madison Public Market is expected to open late next year.

Last year brought a sneak peek at the market site in the current Fleet Services building, a first look at designs, fundraising and continued training for 30 entrepreneurs in the city’s MarketReady Program.

“We made a lot of progress over the last year,” said Dan Kennelly, manager of the city’s Office of Business Resources...

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 Madison Urban Design Commission to take up Milwaukee Street, University Avenue developments

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Foxconn’s Smart Manufacturing Center under construction
MOUNT PLEASANT — Foxconn Technology Group and Mortenson, its construction manager for the Smart Manufacturing Center, announced Friday that “vertical” construction and steel placement is underway for the company’s nearly 260,000-square-foot SMC at the Wisconn Valley Science and Technology Park.

Foxconn said the purpose of the SMC is to further attract business partnerships within the science and technology park, to drive job creation and economic development.

The SMC is planned to be a multifaceted manufacturing facility where components for enterprise servers and racks will be manufactured and assembled. In addition, the center will have a second-floor mezzanine to house support staff and meeting spaces...
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Ken Notes: So it is in the dirt, we are just not exactly sure what, but dirt is good!!

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Big-money lobbyists against regulating PFAS

Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC) and four other special interest groups opposed to bills aimed at regulating so-called “forever chemicals” have spent more than $13.3 million on lobbying and elections in the last five years.

The bills they oppose, Assembly Bills 842 and 843 and Senate Bills 772 and 773, would fund research, clean-up efforts, and create enforcement standards for PFAS, which are hazardous chemicals that do not break down in the environment or human body.

...Collectively, the five groups that oppose the bills have spent nearly $8.5 million on electioneering activities and campaign contributions between January 2015 and June 2019 – all to benefit Republican legislative and statewide candidates. In addition, they have spent more than $4.8 million on lobbying between January 2015 and December 2019. Here’s a snapshot of who they are:...

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Ken Notes: Read this article. There is a fear of costs and the "primary responsible parties" part of any cleanup. This cost us much of our paper industry in the past and PFAS may put many at risk in the future. Imagine what would happen if every local fire department were billed millions because they trained with foam not to mention the impact on communities that have no cost effective way to remove PFAS from the drinking water. We need to identify COST EFFECTIVE solutions as we continue to identify the problem. We can and should stop the use of PFAS now and work together on solutions for the future.

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Dairyland Power Cooperative
We will power our communities and empower cooperative members
to improve the quality of their lives.
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King Drive co-working space, African-American Chamber of Commerce offices to open in spring with Abele gift
The $650,000 redevelopment of a vacant building just north of downtown Milwaukee into co-working space is receiving a $300,000 gift from County Executive Chris Abele, and is to be completed this spring.

The Chris Abele Legacy Co-Working and Innovation Space, 1920 N. King Drive, will include a shared commercial kitchen and the new headquarters for the African-American Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin.

Renovations at the two-story building, which includes a former storefront, started in 2019. The chamber will move its offices there from 633 W. Wisconsin Ave.

Abele "has gone above and beyond to ensure African American entrepreneurs have an inclusive and accessible space to find themselves in the work of innovation,” chamber President and Chief Executive Officer Ossie Kendrix, said in a Thursday statement...
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Notes:

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Milwaukee 7 honors RCEDC for economic development
MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee 7 Economic Development Partnership has recognized the Racine County Economic Development Corp. (RCEDC) with its inaugural Excellence in Economic Development Award, M7 officials announced Wednesday.

The award, which recognizes outstanding economic development projects and partnerships that have contributed to the economic vitality of the Milwaukee region, was presented during M7’s annual meeting at Northwestern Mutual’s headquarters in Downtown Milwaukee. RCEDC President Greg Barron, Executive Director Jenny Trick and members of the RCEDC staff were present to accept the award...
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Ken Notes: Congrats! Local EDC`s are so important in Wisconsin. I would love to see all economic development entities in the State working together and we are very close...

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All aboard! Wisconsin and Minnesota on track for improved passenger rail

Projects could bring "higher speed" rail to Wisconsin

A variety of railroad projects are coming together to greatly improve passenger service in Wisconsin, including “higher speed” rail.

They include: doubling daily service between St. Paul and Chicago; increasing the number of round-trip Milwaukee to Chicago trains from seven to 10; express service between Minneapolis and Duluth-Superior; and, already underway, more than $5 million in improvements to the Milwaukee Airport Railroad Station at General Mitchell International Airport, with completion expected in 2023.

Funding for several of the projects is included in Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz’ Building One Minnesota plan, announced Jan. 15. Walz proposes $2.6 billion in bonding to invest in education, environment, public safety and infrastructure....
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Ken Notes: Just listened to a podcast, Derailed, on WPR. This is very well done an should be required listening for any Wisconsin politician, rail advocate, or interested party. We were so close to a system that would have put us on the global map for distribution, economic development, and connecting Chicago, Milwaukee, Madison, and the Twin Cities. We missed the boat (or train as the case may be).

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Pleasant Prairie Finalizes the Purchase and Sale Agreement with HARIBO
HARIBO, the world’s leading manufacturer of gummi treats, finalized the acquisition of a 136.8 acre site from the Village of Pleasant Prairie on Tuesday, February 4. The land is located in Prairie Highland Corporate Park (PHCP), where the company plans to build its first-ever North American manufacturing facility. 

This final closing comes after the Village of Pleasant Prairie completed land and infrastructure improvements inclusive of sewer systems, water main and roadways. As these steps were underway, HARIBO has continued to take key learnings from building manufacturing facilities around the world and incorporate them with care into its site plans in Pleasant Prairie...   ...more

Ken Notes: I see a tour in my future!!! May I add that it is a very nice touch to have "News Outlet" on you community page especially when it is setup for sharing on social media. I can help communities with this if they want...

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Miron Construction


Miron’s comprehensive range of construction services are designed to meet the unique and diversified needs of our clients. Contact Us.
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Vos Convening Special Session On State Dairy Crisis

Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said Monday afternoon that he will convene a special session Tuesday to introduce bills regarding the state`s dairy crisis. The special session bills will be introduced and referred to committee. Public hearings will then be held, Vos said. 

"Farmers are already telling us the governor’s package does more to grow the size of government than actually help our rural areas," Vos said in a written statement. "We’re open to amending the bills or introducing our own proposals in order to do what’s best for rural Wisconsin." 

During the State of the State address last week, Gov. Tony Evers called on lawmakers to hold a special session. Wisconsin lost 10 percent of its dairy farms in 2019, breaking the previous year`s record high.

Vos said Monday during an interview with WPR’s "The Morning Show," that he agrees the state is undergoing an agriculture crisis, but Evers has gone about it the wrong way...

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State office building anticipated in Milwaukee is still years away from construction

The Near West Side Partners effort to sell 2.5 acres to the state of Wisconsin for a large office building advanced Tuesday with the caveat that nothing will likely be built there for at least two years, if ever.

There already is a long history to the state’s planning for a new Milwaukee office, with several stops and starts. In mid-January, the state agreed to negotiate with Near West Side Partners to buy a full block the organization assembled southwest of West Wisconsin Avenue and North 27th Street.

The state could build a 200,000-square-foot office there to replace its current downtown operations at Sixth and Wells streets. But Milwaukee Ald. Robert Bauman cautioned Tuesday that nothing will be built unless state officials approve money for the project in the 2021-’22 Wisconsin biennial budget....

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Ken Notes: The State should explore restructuring its office inventory there are several opportunities to "trade up".

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Wisconsin part of global economy
APPLETON — There are many reasons why people in Wisconsin and elsewhere can be skeptics when it comes to the global economy. Whether it’s the coronavirus outbreak, seemingly endless debates over tariffs and trade pacts, or worries over jobs being lost overseas, people can be tempted to think it’s time to crawl into a manhole and cover it from above.

If only it was that simple — or even possible.

The reality of today’s economy is that connections that range from digital to physical have transformed how people around the world work and live, usually for the better. Wisconsin’s geographic position in the middle of the United States may insulate the state from some trends, but the diversity of its economy means it can provide the goods and services the world needs while also attracting investment from abroad...
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Ken Notes: As always, Tom Still offers a great perspective on Wisconsin`s place in the global economy. I would add that we need to pair this with a positive political picture, and we are not very good at that part of the equation.

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Capital City Sunday: AG industry, WMC, WEDC, and Dementia crisis
ADISON (WKOW) -- Governor Evers ordered lawmakers to convene for a special session to vote on a package of bills to address the state`s dairy crisis.

Republican leaders support finding ways to help farmers, but they doubt they`ll convene stating the timeline to review the bills is too short.

The governors initiatives include; creating a Wisconsin initiative for dairy exports with a goal increasing dairy exports to 20% of the country’s milk supply by 2024, provide research assistance to farmers at no cost, providing mental health services to support farmers, giving small dairy processing plants priority when issuing state grants, and a new program to connect local farms with more businesses to purchase their food....
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Kraus-Anderson Construction Company






Established in 2001, KA’s Wisconsin team upholds our commitment of more than 40 years of construction service in Wisconsin.  Combined with the resources of the total KA enterprise, we are capable of undertaking work of virtually any size, scope, or location, whether locally, regionally, or nationally.


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Welcome 2020 WDN sponsor Kraus-Anderson Construction Company. Please check out the link to view the amazing projects they have developed from idea to completion.

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Feds award Wisconsin airports $16.1 million for airport restructuring growth
As part of the U.S. Department of Transportation`s plans to maintain and modernize the infrastructure of airports across the country, Wisconsin airports received $16.1 million in Wisconsin airport infrastructure projects, including $600,000 for the rehabilitation of Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport`s primary runway.

U.S. DOT Secretary Elaine Chao announced Wednesday at an event in Milwaukee that 247 airports in 40 states will receive a total of $520.5 million for infrastructure projects...
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Ken Notes: Airport funding has always been the litmus test of a strong economy and for those keeping track I said the exact same thing in 2006. I am just saying...

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OPINION: Wisconsin Conservationists, Counties Fight Wind Energy Transmission Line

Conservation groups and counties in Wisconsin have filed separate lawsuits to block construction within the state of a proposed multistate transmission line intended to deliver electric power from out-of-state wind farms to utilities in 12 states.

The Wisconsin Public Service Commission (WPSC) unanimously approved construction of the Wisconsin portion of a new electric power transmission line known as Cardinal-Hickory Creek on August 19, 2019. As conceived by the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), which manages the open-access high-voltage transmission system from Manitoba Canada through the midwestern United States to the Gulf Coast, Wisconsin’s share of the costs of the 12-state, $492 million development is projected to be $67 million...

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Ken Notes: This is marketing at it`s best or worst. It is true that the west can produce more renewable power than they can use so they want to send it east where it is needed and states (Like Wisconsin) have quotas for renewables. The Highway east runs through Wisconsin and is currently small between Iowa and Madison. Thus an upgrade is needed and it cuts through the driftless. I personally would like to see it follow the actual highway between the two areas but it is cheaper to buy farm and woodlands in the driftless than to acquire the right of way near the existing road.

I wish we could get all the facts in front of us and get rid of the drama and make good decisions that are best for everyone....

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Wisconsin PFAS Action Council Developing Action Plan

The Wisconsin PFAS Action Council (WisPAC) is currently developing an action plan to identify priority responses to per-and polyfluroalkyl substances (PFAS) spread in the state.

The substances are man-made chemicals used in a variety of products including non-stick pans, fast food wrappers, and firefighting foam. They’ve been industry staples for decades, and in that time have contaminated water supplies across the country. In Wisconsin, over 30 such sites have been identified by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Over 4,000 chemicals exist within the umbrella we call PFAS, and they might not all have the same health effects....

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Ken Notes: I will repeat my cautionary note, do not mandate solution we can not afford or prior to federal support being on line. Also do not forget other water issues in light of PFAS....

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Sauk County approves recreational plan to determine future development of county parks system
The Sauk County Board of Supervisors has approved a four-year recreational plan, outlining the future development and needs of the county’s park system and recreational spaces.

The goal is to provide an outline for development of the nine county parks and recreational areas, by identifying four priorities the county will focus on in the next five years, said Lisa Wilson, director of the county’s Land Resource and Development department...

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Ken Notes: We need to pair park and public land development with private sector tourism development. We rarely connect these two entities bu it would serve us well to do so.

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Fitzgerald appointed to Complete Count Committee
Gov. Tony Evers on Monday, Feb. 10 announced his appointments to serve on the 2020 Census Complete Count Committee, including District 13 State Senator Scott Fitzgerald.

The committee was created through Executive Order #55 and is tasked with educating Wisconsinites on the importance of completing the 2020 census, developing outreach strategies to reach hard-to-count communities, and identifying and reducing barriers that impede participation in the counting process.

Fitzgerald’s State Senate District includes portions of the Town of Bristol.

“In 2010, Wisconsin had one of the highest census turnouts in the nation and we need to make sure that we are a leader once again,” said Evers. “That said, we’ve got our work cut out for us. It’s estimated that Wisconsin’s hard-to-count population is over 600,000, so the work of this committee cannot be taken lightly. I look forward to working with these dedicated individuals to ensure Wisconsin has an accurate and complete count in the 2020 Census.”...
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Ken Notes: With the current national political climate it is going to be very difficult to get an accurate count of our farm labor in the State. To be honest we need to establish federal regulations to deal with this. I would like to see a farm labor adoption program that creates a "legal status" for farm labor.

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Engineered Construction Inc. / General Contractors

   
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WEC Energy Group pledges $2 million to Milwaukee 7 economic development efforts

WEC Energy Group pledged $2 million toward the Milwaukee 7’s next five years of economic development efforts, continuing the power company’s hefty support of the organization.

Gale Klappa, executive chairman of WEC Energy and co-chair of Milwaukee 7, announced the financing during Wednesday’s annual meeting of the economic development group. See the attached slideshow for photos of the Milwaukee 7 event held in Northwestern Mutual’s downtown Milwaukee offices...

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HSA to develop multi-phase business park just over Wisconsin-Illinois border

HSA Commercial Real Estate recently acquired a 68-acre land parcel at Wilmot Road and 136th Avenue in Bristol, Wisconsin, near I-94 and the Wisconsin-Illinois border.

HSA Commercial has already received approval to develop a large-scale, multi-phase business park on the parcel consisting of three buildings totaling more than 1 million square feet. The development team plans to deliver the first two speculative buildings later this year — a rear-load 157,300-square-foot warehouse building with 31 truck docks and a cross-docked 471,950-square-foot distribution center with 72 truck docks...

See Also:

HSA buys land from Pleasant Prairie for 1 million-square-foot development

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‘Everybody expects things a lot quicker:’ Ascension opens new $42M health center in Mount Pleasant

MOUNT PLEASANT -- $42 million. That`s how much Ascension Wisconsin just spent on a new health center off of Highway 20 in Mount Pleasant.

The clinic celebrated its grand opening Wednesday, Feb. 12 and aims to be a one-stop shop for just about anything patients could need.

"Everybody expects things a lot quicker, and so, medicine has always been one of those technologies that always lags behind," said Dr. Amrinder Singh, an Ascension Wisconsin family medicine physician.

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Ken Notes: Congrats. I do want to point something out.. if we continue to build these high profit one stop shops which are actually very nice we remove some of the more profitable income from our traditional hospitals. The hospitals then have to provide emergency care and extended care which is not profitable with little sustaining income because the clinic does that stuff now. Just a thought let me know if I am wrong...

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IPR (Integrated Public Resources) / McMahon Associates


As an affiliate of McMahon Associates, Inc., IPR provides Public/Private Partnership (P3) opportunities for a vast array of projects in small to medium-sized communities, as well as offering Municipal Administrator Services to local governments on an as-needed basis... and... A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News   ...more

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They’re building a better future

The east side of New Reflections-Pathway to Hope transitional housing off County Highway B in the City of Hayward has been busy with a ªgroup of five men and a supervisor building a 28-by-40 foot storage shed.

It’s obviously a construction site, but then again it’s much more.

Besides the sides of the building going on and up, there’s also learning and new opportunities.

The five men are inmates of Sawyer County Jail and the supervisor is an instructor for the Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College (WITC) Construction Foundations Mobile Lab.

Before they were pounding nails, the five had been in classroom training with instructor Ed Murray...

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Milwaukee developer proposes 300-apartment complex for Pleasant Prairie
The apartment complex is the first phase of a 94.6-acre, four-part development project being planned by the developer.
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Ken Notes: Story may be behind Paywall...

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PSC approves 149-megawatt solar farm in Jefferson County
isconsin regulators unanimously approved construction Thursday of a 149-megawatt solar farm in Jefferson County to produce energy for Dairyland Power Cooperative.

Badger State Solar is the fifth large-scale solar farm authorized since April. Once completed, the new facilities will have a combined capacity of 750 megawatts, roughly six times the current total solar capacity.

Ranger Power plans to build and operate the solar farm on about 1,200 acres of land in the towns of Oakland and Jefferson, about 25 miles southeast of Madison. La Crosse-based Dairyland has a contract to purchase the power.
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Richland Center Economic Development Summit to be held Feb. 19
Richland Center: Community Prosperity Alliance, a division of Southwest Partners, will host the second annual Richland Area Economic Development Summit on Wednesday, February 19, at 6:00 p.m. in the Coppertop Theatre on the UW Platteville-Richland campus, 1200 US Hwy. 14 in Richland Center. This annual event is free and open to the public.

The Summit is an opportunity to bring together business, city and county leaders for an update on issues that impact local and regional economies. Participants will network with others about growth and improvement prospects for the greater Richland County Area. Hear from speakers who will reflect on 2019, provide updates on current activity, and share their vision for the future. WRCO’s Ron Fruit will serve as the event’s emcee...
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Ken Notes: Every community or region should hold one of these each year and local officials should be required to attend.

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Downtown residents argue against pool in Langdon Street apartments
Downtown Madison residents are hoping the city`s Urban Design Commission will take into account their concerns when it once again takes up plans for a Langdon Street apartment building at its meeting Wednesday.

The Hub II is a seven-story, 124-unit apartment building proposed for 126 Langdon St. While Langdon is primarily home to UW-Madison students, the nearby Mansion Hill neighborhood includes a mix of residents.
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Ken Notes: I get neighborhood input but this goes too far.

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Toward One Wisconsin 2020 Conference

April 28-29, 2020

Radisson Hotel and Conference Center
2040 Airport Drive
Green Bay, WI 54313

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A Conference on Building Communities of Equity and Opportunity

T1W will bring together individuals and organizations from multiple sectors across Wisconsin to address the most persistent barriers to inclusion, what is working, and what is promising on the horizon.

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Plan Commission denial of Amazon plan raises concerns about demolition permit process

Amazon’s proposal to open a package delivery center on Madison’s east side may be slowed after the city’s Plan Commission denied plans for part of the project, including a large parking lot.

The major online retail company wants to ultimately combine properties at 3630 and 3650 Milwaukee Street and reuse part of the former Swiss Colony Building for an Amazon Hub package distribution facility. On Monday, the Plan Commission denied plans for surface parking and stormwater management proposed for the three-acre 3630 Milwaukee St. parcel.

The 6-2 vote to deny the plans does not mean Amazon’s vision for a Madison location is dead...

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Local farmer responds to Governor Evers` plan to support farmers

Governor Evers says between 2011 and 2018, Wisconsin lost about a third of its dairy farms.

At the State of the State address, Governor Evers announced a three part plan and called for a special legislative session next week to take up a package of bills that would address some of the challenges faced by dairy farmers.

The package of bills include legislation that would increase Wisconsin’s dairy exports to 20% of US milk supply by 2024, increase staffing at UW Extension, increase farmers’ access to mental health resources and initiate a Farm to Fork program that will connect farmer’s food products with universities, technical colleges, hospitals and local businesses.

Governor Evers says he is also working with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation to establish the Office of Rural Prosperity and creating a blue ribbon commission.

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Ken Notes: Until CAFO`s are on the agenda the state will continue to lose smallers farms...

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Wisconsin ACT test scores have declined since 2014

The share of Wisconsin high school students deemed to be college-ready has declined since the 2014-2015 school year according to a new report from the Wisconsin Policy Forum. While the state leads most others that test 100 percent of high school students, the data also shows significant gaps in college-readiness based on race and economic status.  

The Wisconsin Policy Forum analyzed ACT data collected by the state Department of Public Instruction (DPI) since it began requiring all high school juniors to take the ACT.

The report shows that the state`s composite score — an average of all results — fell slightly last school year to 19.6 compared to the average of 19.8 from the 2017-2018 academic year. The state`s composite ACT score during the 2014-2015 school year was 20. Those numbers are important because ACT scores are one of the factors colleges use when deciding which students to admit. For the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire an ACT composite score of 21-26 is recommended students. For UW-Madison an ACT score of 27-32 is recommended...

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Ken Notes: May I offer a first hand opinion as to why, cellphone and computers have invaded our classrooms and are taking away a students ability to function without them. There is no doubt technology is a valuable tool but it is imperative we teach students to reason without it then and only then use it to enhance what they have learned. We think that providing every student with a computer or pad is a value and at home it may be but in the classroom they have become a tech nightmare....

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OPINION: TIF bill could stymie development in Wisconsin
MILWAUKEE — Wisconsin continues to capture significant investment from global business leaders.

In just the past 12 months, companies such as Milwaukee Electric Tool, Oshkosh Corporation and Leonardo DRS have committed to constructing and occupying new corporate headquarters in Wisconsin. These three developments alone will create or retain over 2,500 jobs and add $75 million in local assessed property value. And Milwaukee Electric Tool just announced another massive campus in Menomonee Falls that could produce an additional 770 jobs in the area...
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Ken Notes: I have read the actual bill and am not too worried, but we really need to repeal and recreate the TIF legislation to mor align it with how it is actually used. Specifically we need to mandate development agreements, allow for single project TIFs, encourage multi-jurisdictional TIF developments, encourage pay as you go TIF funding, allow schools, tech, and counties to access partial funds from unused portions of deposits, encourage land acquisition for industrial, retail and housing developments in districts...

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MadREP News
Stay up to date by reading our MadREP Report, a bi-monthly newsletter that features regional economic development news, events and opportunities.


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WEDC Head Says State, Foxconn Working On Innovative Ways To Find Workers

The head of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. (WEDC) says there has been "tremendous" amounts of communication with Foxconn, however she doesn`t have a sense of whether the company met its job goals in 2019 to receive state tax incentives.

WEDC CEO Missy Hughes told WPR`s "The Morning Show" that she will wait until Foxconn submits its job report to her office April 1 before commenting further on the company’s job creation.  

Foxconn had to create a minimum of 520 jobs in 2019 to be eligible for state tax credits, according to the current contract with the state. Whether that number will change is unclear.

In December, Gov. Tony Evers said he thought the state and Foxconn would renegotiate its contract because the company is no longer building the product it promised when they agreed to the deal in 2017...

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Village Board approves conceptual plan for upscale multi-family development
PLEASANT PRAIRIE — The Village Board has approved a conceptual plan to build 300 upscale apartments south of Highway 50 near 104th Avenue.

The board voted 5-0 Monday night approving the plan that, along with the apartments, includes four zones of development, including senior housing and commercial businesses.

The entire development encompasses 95 acres between 75th and 79th streets from 104th to 115th avenues. Milwaukee-based Fiduciary Real Estate Development Inc. is developing the project...
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Racine County receives $2M grant to provide added job training
The Wisconsin Department of Administration awarded Racine County a $2 million grant from a Community Development Block Grant program to provide low- and moderate-income individuals with job training.

The grants are awarded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers made the announcement Feb. 13.

“Expanding access to affordable career training is critical to ensuring that folks have the opportunity to get ahead in our state with good paying jobs in high-growth areas,” Evers said in a press release. “Workforce development is about more than counting job creation, it`s about connecting the dots to make sure that Wisconsin is working for everyone and I look forward to seeing the positive impact these funds have on the Racine County area.”...
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Economic Development Resources


Dane County ED













APA WI

Madison Area Chambers -- New!

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WEDC Secretary Highlights Move To Aid The Rural Economy
RHINELANDER, WI (WSAU-WXPR) -- The Secretary of Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation says the agency will be working hard to use a new office to help rural Wisconsin`s economy. 

Missy Hughes tells WXPR Radio a key is Governor Tony Evers` creation of the Office of Rural Prosperity which is inside WEDC. "The intent behind that office is to be a one-stop-shop for rural communities as they come forward with a project, we can help them leverage the state resources through all the different departments and make sure that project comes to fruition but also is as big and great as the community wants it to be."...

See Also:

WEDC head backs current agency structure, calls for finding `innovative ways` to help farmers

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Ken Notes:Dairy farms will struggle as long as CAFO`s can make more profit on less land and dispose of their waste in ways that are cheap and may harm our water systems. Digestion is the answer but as of yet it is not even on the radar screen...

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Port Milwaukee getting $31.3M agriculture-export operation
Port Milwaukee and the agricultural company DeLong plan to build a $31.3 million export center on Jones Island using a federal grant to cover half of the project cost.

The operation would be the first and only “bulk agricultural transload” center on the Great Lakes to supply soybeans and animal-feed supplement. Supplies would be sent primarily by truck and rail to ships at port.

The project calls for demolishing abandoned structures that now sit at the site and building an operation to store products for shipping. Clinton-based DeLong, a food and grain supplier, would pay for part of the development and lease space there.

Port Milwaukee’s money for the project is coming from a $15.9 million Port Infrastructure Development Program grant from the U.S. Maritime Administration. U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin announced this week that the money had been awarded...
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Findorff - Character Community Craftsmanship
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Findorff, builders of Wisconsin`s finest projects...and ...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News

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Wisconsin law says kids must be taught Native American issues, but teachers say they don`t know how

Heather Ann Moody once spent two hours poring over the pages of her daughter`s eighth-grade history book, looking for the word sovereignty.

Sovereignty, the constitutional right of Native American tribes in the U.S. to make and be governed by their own laws, is at the crux of their identity. It`s what makes tribes their own political nations, not just members of a cultural group. It`s the defining feature of indigenous issues past and present.

So when her daughter told her that the book didn`t even mention the word, Moody, a professor of American Indian Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and an enrolled member of Wisconsin`s Ho-Chunk Nation, didn`t believe her...

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Ken Notes: As a substitute teacher I often see technology abused in the classroom, here would be a place to use it effectively. I see a great opportunity for a series of videos on this subject that could stimulate classroom discussion on the topic.

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Northern Wisconsin Communities Moving Forward On Housing Study
Local Leaders Seek Support For Efforts To Grow Affordable Housing

Northern Wisconsin communities are joining forces on a study of housing needs in Ashland and Bayfield counties. Northern leaders met with state housing officials during the 35th annual Superior Days in Madison to seek support for efforts to grow affordable housing in rural areas.

The city of Bayfield was recently awarded a roughly $84,000 grant from the state Department of Administration for a housing study of Ashland and Bayfield counties, which would likely begin April 1. The study is set for completion by January.

Bayfield Mayor Gordon Ringberg said there`s a clear need for affordable workforce housing, especially for those working in the city`s hotels and restaurants. He said Bayfield is losing rentals regularly to owners who would rather list properties for short-term rental...
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Associated Bank Funds Trio of WI Early Learning Centers

Associated Bank provided a total of $8,652,388 in three separate loans to Bradford Real Estate for land acquisition and construction of early childhood learning centers in three Wisconsin communities. SVP Daniel Barrins of Associated Bank’s commercial real estate division managed the loans and closings.

Each of the stand-alone, single-tenant 10,000 square-foot buildings will be fully-leased by The Learning Experience (TLE) early childhood education centers. All three will be completed and opened in 2020.

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Expert: Earth Day is turning 50. Here’s what the first one was like in 1970

BUFFALO, N.Y. — In spring of 1970, millions of people across the United States took part in over 12,000 events to mark the first Earth Day, heeding the call of a senator from Wisconsin who felt that pollution and development were out of control and needed to be checked.

It was a sign of the times that so many Americans in so many different places cared: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency did not yet exist. Gasoline contained lead. Skies over Birmingham, Alabama, were often brown, and smog clouded the streets of Los Angeles, California. In Cleveland, Ohio, the Cuyahoga River was so polluted that it burned in 1969, with flames lighting up an oil slick on its surface...

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JSD Professional Services
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JSD provides complete services in Planning & Development, Civil Engineering, Transportation Engineering, Water Resources, Landscape Architecture, Construction Services, Surveying & Mapping, and Environmental Services. Offices in Madison - Milwaukee - Kenosha - Fox Valley & Wausau.

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$48 Million Lakefront Hotel Project Gets Major Move

The $48 million project has been moved from one side of the Festival Grounds to the other. Here`s why:

RACINE, WI — After looking at the legal challenges of building a hotel and convention center on land originally re-claimed from Lake Michigan, city officials and a developer unveiled revised plans for the proposed $48 million project.

Racine Mayor Cory Mason was joined by Gatehouse Capital developer David Rachie, State Representatives Bob Wittke and Tip McGuire, and members of the Racine Common Council to unveil a complete redesign and location change for a hotel and expanded convention center at the City`s Festival Hall.

Together, the city and Gateway Capital figured out that it was better to opt for an alternative development plan which takes all private development entirely out of the historically-identified lakebed area and moves it the development to the corner of Lake Ave and KipiKawi Causeway...
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Mayo Clinic`s Wisconsin projects moving at glacial pace

Any whispers yet about Mayo Clinic’s plan for the Onalaska, Wis., site next to Menards? Thanks, Scott of Onalaska

Thanks for the opportunity to focus my knowing gaze to the east ... and possibly pick up some cheese curds and a six-pack of Spotted Cow.

So the site you are referring to is 187.4 acres of land that Mayo Clinic owns in the Sand Lake Road area in Onalaska. Mayo Clinic filed plans in 2015 for a new campus. It purchased the land for $8.32 million in 2014...

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Ken Notes: WDNews relies on the actual journalism provided by your local media outlets. Without these partners we can not bring you the unbiased news, leads and updates you need to thrive in Wisconsin. Support your local media...

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Land and Space / Tom Daykin
Note: I changed the link here to Toms Twitter account. JS limits the number of articles I can read so I look at TD`s Twitter feed every week. I`ll Still include JS articles but after ten you need to subscribe.

I also updated the picture because, well Tom is getting old and development is taking it`s toll!!!

Milwaukee - 1/1/2020 Journal Sentinel business reporter Tom Daykin talks about commercial real estate and development, including stores, hotels, offices, condos, apartments and industrial buildings...

Land & Space Development Database


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Ken Notes: Tom Daykin is the source for ED news in MKE. This is a permanent link to articles in his blog which is updated daily...

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The Wisconsin Development Network
Our Current Publications:
WDN
WDNGreen
WDNGreen.com     
WisconsinApprentice
DriftlessNotes

  CirexNews.com
DevelopmentMatters
    
Ken Harwood
Advocating for Wisconsin
Editor [at] WisconsinDevelopment.com
608.334.2174
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WDN Notes...
Online at WisconsinDevelopment.com (4 weeks of articles) - Searchable at Search WDN - WDN Tool Box, Links you can use everyday to help you and Wisconsin grow! Edited and published by Ken Harwood @ LinkedIn. 

Click Here To Subscribe or add Friends and Colleagues... WDN si Available free thanks to our SPONSORS...  Why I publish WDN...  WDGreen Environmental News From a Business Perspective!
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Ken Notes: "Ken Notes" may be reprinted in context without permission. Attribution should be Ken Harwood, Editor Wisconsin Development News or Ken Harwood Advocate for Wisconsin.

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