Wisconsin Development News (click here to read online)
Ken Harwood
Advocating for Wisconsin
Ken  [at] KenHarwood.com
608.334.2174

This Weeks Articles...

Gov. Evers announces second package of COVID-19 relief and support
VCEDC, WEDC Hosts Call-In To Help Northwoods Businesses
Wisconsin warns payday lenders not to take advantage of unemployed, underemployed amid coronavirus pandemic
Baldwin announces over $37 Million in new community development block grants
Rising to the challenge: There’s help for small, local businesses
Amazon to open massive Beloit facility in 2020
Some basics on applying for unemployment benefits — and why you should apply right now
These businesses can remain open following governor’s Safer at Home order
Wisconsin citizens step up to help
COVID-19 business impact data collection launched
Business inquiries to WEDC over Evers` order top 7,000
Essential manufacturers in Fond du Lac County alter operations for coronavirus
Self-employed people out of work seek assistance during pandemic
Guest View: Working on Washburn County`s economics, helping its businesses
ThriveED, UW-Whitewater set program to help local, small business
Wisconsin SBDC To Assist Businesses With Disaster Loan Applications
UW System to launch new EApp electronic application
Wisconsin 4-H Foundation receives $10 grand
Palmer-Donavin finds success with Beloit plant
Safer at Home order could cost Wisconsin`s golf industry millions of dollars, leaders say

Development Matters radio Show

Listen Live Saturday from 10AM until Noon
On 92.7 FM Madison or 101.5 FM  Milwaukee
or online live at Talk927FM.com

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Wisconsin Badgers win ESPN`s simulated NCAA tournament
The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic forced the NCAA to cancel the men’s basketball national championship tournament and the excitement that March Madness brings each spring.

But that didn’t stop media outlets from using projection models to predict how the NCAA would have gone had it been played.

In ESPN’s single-run model — using the final bracket produced by Joe Lunardi and the company’s Basketball Power Index metric — the University of Wisconsin won its first national championship since 1941.

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Ken Notes: They would have gone deep that is for sure!!!

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Gov. Evers announces second package of COVID-19 relief and support
MADISON, Wis. (WEAU)-- Just days after Gov. Tony Evers announced his first package COVID-19 relief and support, the Governor announced his second package of relief and support. The comprehensive legislative proposal would provide critical investments in health services, support for essential workers, and assistance for Wisconsin families and businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This package, among many other proposals, includes:
  • Increasing funding for Medicaid providers via supplemental payments and rate increases to support the healthcare system’s response to the public health emergency;
  • Establishing a fund to reduce providers’ uncompensated care costs targeting reimbursement for treatment-related costs for uninsured individuals;
  • Establishing a COVID-19 reinsurance program to reduce health insurance premiums;
  • Providing grant funding to provide food assistance and meal delivery;
  • Prohibiting utility cooperatives from disconnecting customers and prohibiting land-lord directed disconnections from rental units during a public health emergency;
  • Ensuring workers receive back payment for any lost unemployment insurance benefits as a result of the delay in suspending the one-week waiting period;
  • Providing supplemental payments to child care providers, if that provider needed to shut down during the public health emergency;
  • Allowing households to apply for heating assistance under the low-income energy assistance program anytime during the 2020 calendar year;
  • Increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit for low-income families;
  • Providing municipalities the flexibility to implement multiple installments of three or more payments for 2020 property taxes;
  • Waiving interest and penalties on delinquent property taxes included in the 2019 payable 2020 tax roll, on and after April 1, 2020;
  • Creating a fund through the Wisconsin Housing and Economic -Development Association to provide 6 months of support for prevention of single-family foreclosures and providing refinancing opportunities to current borrowers; and
  • Providing grant funding for small businesses and workers through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.
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Help Starts Here

New! The Small Business Owner`s Guide to the Cares Act

If you or someone you know needs assistance finding food, paying housing bills, accessing free childcare or other essential services, follow this link or call 211 to speak to someone who can help. 211wisconsin.communityos.org/

211 connects you with thousands of nonprofit and government services in your area. If you want personal assistance call the three-digit number 211 or 877-947-2211. A friendly voice to talk with you 24/7/365. The COVID-19 Information and Resources page deals with information and help specific to Covid-19.

The State of Wisconsin web page for Covid-19 has now been established at Wisconsin.gov/Covid19 . And the Wisconsin Department of health website is here www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/.

WEDC has several resources here https://wedc.org/programs-and-resources/covid-19-response/.

Racine has a website dedicated to Covid 19 here: racinecoronavirus.org

Nationally the CDC website is here: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/

A dedicate National site is https://www.coronavirus.gov/

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Ken Notes: Please be very careful when someone offers assistance for a fee. Deal ONLY with advisors you know and trust.

I will keep this page updated and at the top of WisconsinDevelopment.com until the crisis passes.

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Madison mayor asks for moratorium on evictions; county placing homeless in hotels

Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway, speaking Thursday afternoon, said that she is asking every landlord to hit pause on evictions and non-renewals during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that she is asking state officials to issue a moratorium on evictions and non-renewals.

“If I could issue a moratorium on evictions and non-renewals here in the city of Madison, I would,” Rhodes-Conway said. “But I am specifically prevented by state law from doing so, which is an incredibly frustrating thing when you’re trying to take care of your community.”...

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Ken Notes: I understand the stimulus but like 2007 there will be winners and losers. I wish we could just put the economy on hold for ninety days with interest free loans to cover the essentials. Day traders are making fortunes betting on our misfortune. Banks will again enforce bankruptcies instead of restructuring loans, we will evict tenants rather than defer rent, and on the other side of the coin some nonprofits will profit and others will struggle. I do love the stories of those who are helping for no other reason than it is the right thing to do.

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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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...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News

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Wisconsin`s smallest businesses could get $20K grants from state, federal government to help them through coronavirus

MADISON - Small businesses in Wisconsin could get a boost from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation or the U.S. Small Business Administration to help them through the coronavirus pandemic. 

Missy Hughes, WEDC executive director, announced a $5 million grant program, known as Small Business 20/20, that will assist the "smallest of the small businesses" in Wisconsin, according to a release.

The organization will provide up to $20,000 per business, the release said. The money can be used by businesses with less than 20 employees to cover rent and meet payroll expenses including sick, family and other types of leave related to the virus. The grants will be funded through partnerships with the state`s 23 community development financial institutions, which already work with many small businesses that will need the grants, the release said. To qualify for the grant, businesses must already have a loan from a community development financial institution in good standing....

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Ken Notes: See link above to get details on the program. I had another idea, with interest rates as low as they are, would now be a good time to partner with banks, business and communities to offer interest free loans to businesses that a community wants. Like TIF or CDBG this loan program could be used by communities to help businesses of value to a region. The cost would be the interest for the life of the loan which is now close to nothing...

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‘Everyone has to have it’: Broadband gap leaves rural Wisconsin behind during coronavirus crisis

Wisconsin’s dearth of high-speed internet in rural areas makes virtual schooling, remote health care and working from home even more difficult

The Newcomer household near Monroe is fairly typical for rural Wisconsin. It is surrounded by cornfields. The nearest neighbor is a quarter-mile down the road. And the internet is terrible.

Now the coronavirus shutdown has put serious stress on the family. The teenagers struggle with the drip of internet service to do their homework while school is closed.

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Ken Notes: I will say this one more time with the frustration that the idea is falling on deaf ears. The new 5G wireless technology can provide quality home and small business internet service anywhere it is available, but the cell companies will only want to establish it where there is population density. The state can mandate broader rural statewide coverage in exchange for access to these high density communities. The time is NOW if we wait we will have a redundant system in the cities and NOTHING in rural Wisconsin.

When I was in Neenah serving on a school board in the 80`s and 90`s a group I sat on partnered with the communities to work with phone, cable and internet providers. The result was a high speed network (at that time fiber) in every school, community and many businesses years even decades befor it was the norm. Our agreements became a model for other communities across the state. We were told at the time that we could not mandate the coverage we were asking for because of cost. We told the companies that if they did not provide the service we wanted they could not have access to our communities. We won then and we can win again with leadership and commitment. Alas we are currently allowing the providers to dictate the terms.

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Wisconsin hospitals will suffer COVID-19 crisis as soon as three weeks: Medical College CEO
If new COVID-19 diagnoses in Wisconsin continue increasing at their current pace, the state’s hospitals will be overwhelmed as soon as three weeks from now, says Medical College of Wisconsin president and CEO Dr. John Raymond Sr.

The number of cases in Wisconsin is doubling every three days, which is consistent with the situation elsewhere in the United States and in Europe, Raymond said. That means the figure is growing exponentially “unless we do something different.”...
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VCEDC, WEDC Hosts Call-In To Help Northwoods Businesses
 Vilas County Economic Development Corporation and Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation held a teleconference roundtable Tuesday for businesses to call in and get help following the signing of the federal stimulus package.

The panel included state and county officials, both sponsoring entities, UW-Stevens Point, Lac du Flambeau economic development and a local lender. Many of the questions were technical, including how business owners could get funds, help their employees and several other topics...
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Ken Notes: My radio show Saturday will feature Errin Welty from WEDC from 10am til noon and you are welcome to call in at 844-967-2798 and ask her about small business...

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Wisconsin warns payday lenders not to take advantage of unemployed, underemployed amid coronavirus pandemic
In response to a skyrocketing number of people out of work or working reduced hours, the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions is warning payday lenders, title loan companies and other non-traditional lenders not to increase interest rates, fees or any costs of borrowing.

The state regulating agency issued its emergency guidelines for lenders earlier this month. The department expected many Wisconsinites will struggle to make ends meet during widespread coronavirus-related business shutdowns....
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Ken Notes: Please tell your friends, employees, associates, and others that the flow of cash has been slowed but most are understanding. Using payday and title type loans in NOT needed and will only get you deeper in both debt and trouble.

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SCS Engineers







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SCS - At the forefront of sustainable environmental solutions for over 40 years and ...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News

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Gov. Evers waives work search, modifies unemployment availability due to COVID-19

MADISON — Governor Tony Evers on Wednesday, March 18 issued Emergency Order #7 waiving work search requirements and modifying the availability requirements for unemployment insurance benefits for workers impacted by COVID-19.

A news release from Gov. Evers` office said Emergency Order #7 waives the requirement that UI claimants conduct at least four weekly work search actions during the COVID-19 emergency, retroactively effective as of March 12. This order also ensures that claimants who are otherwise eligible but out of work due to COVID-19 are considered available for work and therefore eligible for benefits.

The order goes into effect immediately and will remain in effect for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency....

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Ken Notes: I know there will be a lot of layoffs due to Covid-19, but I hope some companies can bend first by asking all employees to take reductions in pay across the board from CEO`s on down. In the recession of 2007ish we had clear winners and losers and even gave government handouts to banks that foreclosed on thousands or homes, manufacturers who laid off huge numbers of employees, and investments that moved jobs out of the country. This time we should reward good behavior not just good economics...

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Wisconsin governor issues order prohibiting non-essential business and travel

CLICK HERE to view the order.

The order goes into effect at 8 a.m. Wednesday, March 25, and remains in effect until 8 a.m. on Friday, April 24, unless the governor announces otherwise.

On Tuesday, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced the number of positive cases of coronavirus rose to 457. The state says 8,237 tests came back negative.

There were no additional deaths to report Tuesday. The statewide total remains at five.

CLICK HERE to find out what is defined as Essential Business in Wisconsin...

See Also:

Wisconsin Republican leaders support one-month Evers order, predict rapid recovery

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Wisconsin`s stay at home order took effect Wednesday. Dozens of local construction sites are still working.

With a statewide order taking effect Wednesday that shuts down many businesses, dozens of Milwaukee-area commercial construction projects were still proceeding.

The developers of those projects consider them to be "essential" — citing the order`s language to continue working.

Construction firms say they`re taking precautions to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

But a spokeswoman for Gov. Tony Evers, whose administration issued the order, cautioned against an overly broad interpretation of what is an essential construction project.

"We do not encourage anyone to try to find loopholes or ways around this order," said Deputy Chief of Staff Melissa Baldauff....


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Baldwin announces over $37 Million in new community development block grants
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin today announced $37,286,321 in new federal Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) for Wisconsin communities to rapidly respond to COVID-19 and the economic and housing impacts caused by it. This funding was included in the bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was signed into law last week.

The CARES Act included $5 billion total in CDBG funding. This initial round of funding is being allocated to states and local governments that received CDBG in Fiscal Year 2020. Additional CDBG allocations are forthcoming, including $1 billion to states to support a coordinated response across entitlement and non-entitlement communities, and $2 billion will be allocated to states and units of local government, cities and counties based on the prevalence and risk of COVID-19 and related economic and housing disruption...
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Ken Notes: I like CDBG, but there are a lot of strings attached....

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Rising to the challenge: There’s help for small, local businesses

MONROE — Kristi Smith, a business consultant for the Southwest Wisconsin Small Business Development Center, was a little hoarse last week when reached by phone.

“Sorry, I’ve been talking for three days straight. My voice is going,” she said.

That morning, March 25, in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gov. Tony Evers ordered Wisconsinites to begin staying at home as much as possible and all “non-essential” businesses to close. The “Safer At Home” order is in effect until at least April 24...

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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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So many businesses had questions about Evers’ ‘Safer at Home’ order, WEDC’s site crashed

MADISON — Businesses with questions about Governor Tony Evers’ stay-at-home order closing certain workplaces were met with a website that refused to load.

In a news release, the governor’s office said businesses unsure about whether they are exempt from the order should contact the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).

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Ken Notes: No doubt...

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Coronavirus effects felt in all aspects of real estate

The spread of the coronavirus across the globe has impacted essentially every aspect of the real estate industry, with southeastern Wisconsin being no exception.

Market uncertainty from the outbreak caused the Wisconsin Center District to push back issuing bonds to pay for the expansion of the downtown Milwaukee convention center. The decision could delay the project’s groundbreaking next year by months...

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Amazon to open massive Beloit facility in 2020

BELOIT—Officials tied to the Amazon fulfillment center development in Beloit say securing the online retail giant puts the city on the map, as work continues at the site.

The $105 million project near the intersection of Gateway Boulevard and Colley Road saw construction start in October of 2019 on the 80-acre site for the 1 million square-foot distribution center. The facility is expected to be ready by the 2020 holiday season, according to Amazon...

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Ken Notes: I look for non covid news but it is hard to find!!!

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Live: What To Know March 19 About COVID-19 In Wisconsin

Number Of Total Cases Of COVID-19 In State Is Rising...

Wednesday afternoon, the state Department of Health Services said every community in the state should expect that the novel coronavirus is there. In their daily press conference, DHS confirmed 106 positive cases, along with 1,577 negative tests. The 106 figure did not include at least two new cases that were announced just before DHS updated its figures, bringing the total to at least 108.

In the last 72 hours the Evers administration has taken several steps to attempt to stop the spread of the new coronavirus, including closing public and private schools indefinitely, limiting groups to less than 10 people, closing all bars and restaurants and limiting child care centers to fewer than 50 children and 10 child care providers.

As the response to the virus evolves, Wisconsin Public Radio will be keeping track of up-to-date happenings here, and in our broadcast and online coverage. If you have questions or concerns about COVID-19 — either about the virus, prevention or preparation — ask us and we`ll do our best to answer. ..
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Ken Notes: I have found Wisconsin Public Radio to be one of the best statewide resources on the issue. The link goes to their homepage rather than a specific story because there is new news almost hourly...

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Some basics on applying for unemployment benefits — and why you should apply right now

More than 150,000 people filed claims for unemployment benefits in Wisconsin last week. Roughly 37,000 claims were filed in just the first two days of this week. And for most people, it was the first time they’ve applied for benefits. 

The process can be complicated and time-consuming in the best of times, and just now is far removed from that. The Department of Workforce Development’s system is overwhelmed by the onslaught of claims....

See Also:

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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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Wisconsin bars, restaurants ordered closed

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers ordered a statewide ban on all gatherings of more than 10 people as of 5 p.m. Tuesday, and closed all bars and restaurants except for delivery and pickup orders, more unprecedented disruptions to daily life imposed in an attempt to limit the spread of the coronavirus...

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Ken Notes: I wonder if we can star a growler to go program to support our local brew pubs....

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These businesses can remain open following governor’s Safer at Home order

MADISON (WKOW) -- Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers today signed an order closing what state officials say are non-essential businesses.

(FULL LIST OF ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES)

The order is effective at 8 a.m. on Weds., March 25, 2020 and will remain in effect until 8 a.m. Fri., April 24, 2020, or until a superseding order is issued. 

If a business is an Essential Business or Operation as defined in this order, it does not need documentation or certification to continue its work that is done in compliance with this order...

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Wisconsin Celebrates Big Wins at the World Championship Cheese Contest
Madison, Wis. (March 9, 2020) – Wisconsin cheesemakers continued their international winning streak last week at the World Championship Cheese Contest by taking home 45 Best of Show awards and sweeping 14 contest classes.  

The biennial three-day contest surged with more submissions than ever – 3,667 samples of cheese, yogurt, butter and other dairy products from 26 countries around the world. Of the awards, Wisconsin won nearly one-third.

"Congratulations to all who participated in this year’s competition...    ...more

Ken Notes: Was looking for some good news and this is great news. Wisconsin continues to produce a world class product that keeps our state on the map. Just a side note Hy Vee bought most of the product from the show that could not be shipped back to the source and is selling it for extremely reasonable prices in the Madison store on Whitney Way. Made for a great lunch last week paired with their salted rye bread.

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Bill to waive unemployment waiting period is from an unexpected source

COVID-19 is bringing legislators together around this issue

Unemployment claims have exploded in Wisconsin, spiking above 100,000 new claims over the past nine days and making national news as businesses shut down and mass layoffs have been announced.

On Monday — even before the emergency Safer at Home order — unemployment claim numbers hit a new high of 21,250 new claims filed, the highest number since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak. There were 1,412 claims on the same date in 2019.

The silver lining for people applying for unemployment is that legislators from both parties, and the governor, are moving closer together on a measure to suspend a one-week waiting period before unemployment benefits can be collected during the COVID-19 pandemic...

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Ken Notes: Alas Covid 19 will fade away and we will again start throwing stones...

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‘We’ve been very busy’: WI DWD fields thousands of calls as laid off workers seek unemployment benefits

MADISON, Wis. – As the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development reports about a dozen mass layoff notices from businesses statewide Monday, its secretary is sharing the best ways for those affected to get unemployment benefits.

To deal with the influx of laid off workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, an emergency order from Governor Tony Evers waives the requirement for applicants to do four job searches a week to receive benefits.

“We’ve been very busy,” DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman said. “I think last week, we had Friday north of 17,000 initial claims filed. For reference, the Sunday before that was 1,500.”

See Also:

Wisconsin Hit by More Than 100,000 Unemployment Claims Over Nine Days As Coronavirus Shocks Economy


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Ken Notes: More coming....

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Governor Evers announced his “Safer at Home” order yesterday, that goes in effect today, and now The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has announced that Job Centers across the state will be closed to the public starting today.

Services to the public will remain available online and assistance will also be delivered over the phone. Customers filing for Unemployment Insurance (UI) should visit https://dwd.wisconsin.gov/uiben/ for information, videos, and to apply for unemployment benefits. 

Applying for unemployment benefits is a two-step process: Apply online the week you become unemployed and File a weekly claim for each week you would like to receive benefits. Job Search assistance can also be found online. Register on www.JobCenterofWisconsin.com (JCW) to create a resume, search for jobs, view online workshops, and research labor market information...
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Wisconsin citizens step up to help

As the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps through Wisconsin, closing schools and businesses and testing the state’s health care workforce, many people wonder how they can help—beyond staying at home to help “flatten the curve” of new infections.

“What can those who are financially able to do help other people or organizations who are severely impacted by this virus?” one person asked WHYsconsin, a project of Wisconsin Public Radio.

“Is there anything that a regular person can do to help health care workers?” another asked. “I’ve signed up to give blood, I have not bought any PPE, and I am respecting the social distancing guidelines. How else can we help the folks at the front lines of the pandemic?”...

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Ken Notes: Disseminate accurate helpful information without a political bias or profit motive. That has been my pledge. hope it helps...

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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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...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News

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Department of Workforce Development Job Centers remain open to support Wisconsin workers and employers

MADISON — The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) currently is keeping local job centers open across the state to assist job-seekers and employers.

Some sites have closed due to their co-location in technical colleges or with organizations that have decided to close their operations to the public.

Sites where the State is the primary public service provider remain open; however, the rapidly evolving public health emergency may close these sites without much notice.

Communications will be sent out locally if a Job Center closes.

A list of currently open and closed Job Centers can be found on DWD’s COVID-19 information page: dwd.wisconsin.gov/covid19/public/det.htm...

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COVID-19 business impact data collection launched
The Madison Region Economic Partnership (MadREP) on March 31 announced its partnership with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC),Wisconsin’s eight other regional economic development organizations (EDOs) and UW-Oshkosh to create and distribute a data collection tool to businesses in the Region who are experiencing economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The survey will be available to businesses in all 72 counties and disseminated by Wisconsin’s nine regional EDOs and their local chamber and community partners.

It may be repeated monthly for additional data. The project will be overseen by MadREP President Paul Jadin, New North Executive Director Barb LaMue and Jeffrey Sachse, MPA, Interim Director, Center for Customized Research and Services (CCRS) at UW-O....

Surveys can be found here.

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Ken Notes: Fill one out it will help a great deal...

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Business inquiries to WEDC over Evers` order top 7,000

The state of Wisconsin by end of day Wednesday had received about 7,400 calls and online inquiries from Wisconsin companies, including 2,700 online messages asking whether they can continue operating during the COVID-19 stay-at-home order. 

In issuing his stay at home order on Tuesday, Gov. Tony Evers included broad exemptions to allow “essential” businesses to keep their doors open. Adopting language used by many states, Evers’ order specifically mentions some businesses as essential, such as grocery stores, gas stations and hardware stores. Other language is less specific, such as manufacturing and distribution for “critical products and industries.”..

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Ken Notes: No doubt that the WEDC has found a new role in all of this and has seemed to have stepped up to the plate. We need to thank them for the guidance they are providing...

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How to apply for unemployment in Wisconsin if you get laid off because of coronavirus

A number of businesses are being forced to shut down (at least temporarily) in response to the coronavirus. If you are laid off or your weekly work hours or wages are reduced, you are potentially eligible for unemployment compensation.

Here`s a quick look at how to apply for and receive benefits.

Every person`s case is different, and unemployment benefits are not guaranteed. All claims based on work done in Wisconsin are filed through Wisconsin, even if you now live in another state....

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Ken Notes: Please share this....

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WEDC staff ‘working through the process’ of determining essential businesses; Unemployment claims soaring

— WEDC chief Missy Hughes says agency staff are “working through the process” of determining which businesses are essential after a spike in related web traffic contributed to the agency’s site crashing. 

“This is a hard conversation,” she said yesterday during a webinar viewed by business leaders. “Everybody wants to be essential, and everybody is essential.”

After the order was announced, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. website received an “extraordinary spike” in traffic and crashed for several hours. WEDC spokesman David Callender said nearly 2,000 information requests about essential business status have been received by the site, and noted agency staff are “swamped” by the workload...   ...more

Ken Notes: Missy is up to the task and seems to be able to sort through the noise. This is a tough job. An example for your consideration, my daughters are massage therapists and their companies were deemed essential and elective surgery was not???

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UW researchers study COVID-19 coronavirus to try to develop treatments, vaccines
In his UW-Madison lab, Adel Talaat developed an experimental vaccine to protect chickens from coronavirus. When the pandemic of a different strain arose in people late last year, Talaat used his technique to create a vaccine candidate for humans.

Talaat’s human vaccine, for which tests began last month in mice, is a long way from approval. Even a different vaccine for which a federally funded clinical trial in people started last week in Seattle won’t be available for at least a year, health officials say....

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Ken Notes: I am betting on the UW, WARF, and URP...

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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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Everything`s In Limbo: Wisconsin Tenants Out Of Work Due To COVID-19 Concerned About Evictions

Breaking Down The Process Of Being Evicted, Process Can Take Up To A Month

As more businesses lay off workers in response to the new coronavirus, some of Wisconsin’s renters are concerned how they will pay their bills and if they will get evicted.

Amy Baker isn’t a renter, but she knows college students that are.

She submitted a question through Wisconsin Public Radio`s WHYsconsin asking: What should people do who can’t make the rent unless they work? What do landlords do when their tenants can’t make the rent for one month? Two? More?

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Frequently asked questions regarding COVID-19 in Wisconsin answered
As the 2019 novel coronavirus continues to spread across the country and the world, many viewers have reached out to us with questions regarding COVID-19. We`re learning more information each day, so here is our best effort to answer your frequently asked questions...
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Essential manufacturers in Fond du Lac County alter operations for coronavirus
OND DU LAC – Are we essential or non-essential?

This is what local businesses had to figure out when, in an effort to limit the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Tony Evers issued his “safer at home" order, which required all residents to stay some except for essential trips, such as trips to the grocery store, doctor, pharmacy and jobs deemed essential.

The list of nonessential businesses includes gyms, movie and other theaters, public and private amusement parks, water parks, play centers and playgrounds, hairdressers and barbers, and other similar facilities, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services....

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‘Scrambling to make rent:’ MKE businesses launch support platform amid coronavirus closures

MILWAUKEE -- New limitations were placed on Wisconsin child care facilities Wednesday, March 18 as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state topped 100, including a children`s hospital doctor, and policymakers scrambled to find emergency help for displaced workers and struggling businesses.

Evers, a Democrat, was to speak with Republican legislative leaders about his plan for a far-reaching emergency package of legislation to help those struggling with the outbreak. Evers has said he wants the Legislature to remove a one-week waiting period to receive unemployment benefits, which the Legislature rejected just last year. Evers was expected to issue an executive order speeding up unemployment benefits for those who have lost a job due to the outbreak....

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Federal loans available for small Wisconsin businesses impacted by COVID-19
Small businesses are now able to get a low-interest federal disaster loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration after being economically impacted by the coronavirus.

The SBA approved Gov. Tony Evers’ request the agency announced on Monday.

The declaration provides assistance to Wisconsin and surrounding counties in Illinois, Michigan, and Minnesota.

“SBA is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist Wisconsin small businesses with federal disaster loans,” said SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza. “We will be swift in our efforts to help these small businesses recover from the financial impacts of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).”...

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Self-employed people out of work seek assistance during pandemic
MENASHA, Wi. (WBAY) - Hundreds of thousands of people in Wisconsin have applied for unemployment so far during the pandemic according to Fox Valley`s Workforce Development board. With so many people wanting to file for unemployment, call lines have been tied up and many have become frustrated...

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As of right now, no change has been made at a state-level to allow for self-employed people to access unemployment insurance. But Fox Valley Workforce Development Board CEO Anthony Snyder says they should still apply anyways.



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Engineered Construction Inc. / General Contractors

   
GENERAL CONTRACTING
     Residential - Commercial - Retail - Controlled Environments
          FIRE /   WATER / STORM DAMAGE RESTORATION
               DESIGN / BUILD & REMODELING


“Located in the Madison region for over 30 years, Engineered Construction is an industry leader in commercial construction and the restoration of commercial and residential fire and water damage.” See comments from our clients here.   ...more
...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News

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H-D suspends US production due to COVID-19; Menomonee Falls employee positive

MILWAUKEE -- Harley-Davidson officials on Wednesday, March 18 announced the suspension of production in the United States as a result of the coronavirus.  Harley-Davidson`s Pilgrim Road Powertrain Operations facility was closed Wednesday afternoon after an employee tested positive for the COVID-19.

The suspension of production was set to take effect Wednesday evening through March 29 at York Vehicle Operations in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin facilities Tomahawk Operations and Pilgrim Road Powertrain Operations.

All Harley-Davidson sponsored events were canceled until mid-April...

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Ken Notes: Don`t get me wrong NOTHING good is coming out of Covid-19, but Harley-Davidson could use a break as they try to identify new markets for their products. The current H-D rider is old, the bikes last forever, and millennials and others under 60 somethings are not buying into the lifestyle. The CEO has been replaced and HD has new more exciting bikes but this is about a way of living and that is hard to change...

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Wisconsin Businesses Pivot To Help Health Care Providers During Pandemic

Area Companies Providing Tents, Making Masks, Hand Sanitizer

While many Wisconsin businesses have closed to slow the spread of the new coronavirus, some companies have shifted gears to help hospitals and health care workers.

Health care providers across the country have reported ongoing and dire shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) including hospital gowns, face shields and respiratory N95 face masks.

Last week, the Wisconsin Hospital Association reached out to the construction trades through the state Department of Workforce Development and Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce asking them to donate any unused N95 masks to their local hospital...

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Ken Notes: Thank You!

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Evers: Small businesses loans now available to Wisconsin
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved Wisconsin’s request for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic to access low-interest federal disaster loans as of Friday evening.

“This is very good news for Wisconsin businesses that have already suffered financial losses due to the COVID-19 outbreak,” Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers said. “With the SBA loans now available to our state, small businesses and their employees have a little more certainty over their financial futures. This is another step in providing much-needed assistance to Wisconsin`s small businesses.”

With unprecedented demand for the loans nationwide, processing of the applications may be delayed, according to Evers...

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Guest View: Working on Washburn County`s economics, helping its businesses
I`m cognizant of the fact that between the moments I’m writing this article and the moment you’re reading this, the world has probably changed in so many ways, which makes it difficult to plan what to say that will make sense in a few days. Planning what to say here, however, is not as stressful as the hundreds of small businesses in Washburn County trying to plan their futures, whether it is a month from now, or how to survive the next day. Folks, there’s no sugar coating the week we’ve just experienced, and we don’t quite know what to expect in the coming weeks and months. The one thing we know is that inaction is not an option, and we must continue to push forward.

The past couple of weeks, the Washburn County Economic Development Corporation (WCEDC) office was busy with calls, emails, Facebook and text messages from businesses in the area wondering what is available to help them, what their next steps are, and a myriad other questions. As the situation seemed to change by the hour, the answers to questions were not always evident....
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Ken Notes: Let me know if I can help...

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ThriveED, UW-Whitewater set program to help local, small business

JEFFERSON — Thrive Economic Development and the Wisconsin Small Business Development Center at UW-Whitewater announced Wednesday they have a program in place to address the unprecedented economic and operational challenges faced by small businesses in Jefferson and Dodge counties as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The two entities announced the creation of the “Back to Business Program” for businesses with fewer than 500 employees, located in Jefferson and Dodge counties...

...To date, according to Pratt, three federal packages have been signed into law and more could come. These programs include:

  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan
  • Paycheck Protection Program
  • Small Business Debt Relief Program
  • Emergency Economic Injury Grant
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Developer acquires site of proposed apartment development in Oak Creek

An Illinois developer that plans to build a 300-unit apartment project near I-94 and Drexel Avenue in Oak Creek has acquired the 35-acre site for $2.85 million, according to state records.

Located at 7851 S. 13th St., northwest of West Drexel Avenue and South 13th Street, the development site was acquired by an affiliate of Mount Prospect, Illinois-based Wingspan Development Group.

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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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Students have a chance to enter ‘Wisconsin YES!’

The closing of schools across Wisconsin due to the COVID-19 epidemic means teachers and students will pursue instruction opportunities online in the coming weeks. One useful tool readily available for middle- and high-school students is the Wisconsin Youth Entrepreneurs in Science, or Wisconsin YES!, contest.

The free, statewide youth business plan contest is modeled after the successful Governor’s Business Plan Contest. It is open for online entries from Wisconsin middle- and high-school students through 5 p.m. April 13, 2020...

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Wisconsin Manufacturers Increase Production To Keep Up With Coronavirus Demand

Companies Making Food, Toilet Paper Work Overtime; Plants Take Precautions Against Spread Of Pandemic

Some manufacturing companies in Wisconsin say they`re ramping up production as consumers stock up in response to the new coronavirus pandemic.

But many plants are preparing for potential impacts to their workforce as the virus spreads.

Stores around the country are struggling to keep toilet paper in stock, with many instituting limits on the amount shoppers can buy.

Many popular toilet paper brands are manufactured in northeast Wisconsin, including Charmin, Quilted Northern and Cottonelle...



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Wisconsin SBDC To Assist Businesses With Disaster Loan Applications
The Wisconsin Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network is helping small businesses apply for federal disaster loans to mitigate the substantial economic injury as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. There are centers all throughout the state that can provide consultation and guidance, including an office for southeastern Wisconsin on the UW-Parkside campus. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering designated states and territories, including Wisconsin as of March 20, low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) for working capital as small businesses have been forced to close or scale back significantly to contain the spread of the virus...


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“So much so fast”: Construction projects carry on, but local developers brace for shutdown

Barring a citywide stop-work order, projects being built on spec and hotel construction would likely be among the first to hit the pause button

Before deciding to build in Chicago, developer Alex Najem factored in a potential black swan event that could upend the economy. Ultimately, he chose to focus his firm, Fulton St. Companies, on the booming Fulton Market district, believing it could withstand a downturn better than other neighborhoods.

But he did not factor in the coronavirus emergency...
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Economic Development Resources


Dane County ED













APA WI

Madison Area Chambers

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Unemployed during COVID-19 outbreak? We have the most common questions answered

Officials answer the most common questions many people are asking right now.

MADISON, Wis.– Business closings and layoffs are increasing every day from the COVID-19 pandemic. The constant closures and shut downs have left thousands worried about their finances.

Caleb Frostman, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development urges employers, “If you have to lay off workers, please encourage your employees to apply for unemployment insurance as soon as possible.”

Frostman said people who are out of work through no fault of their own or are eligible to work can receive unemployment benefits. Typically, those benefits take about a week to begin. But Frostman said the state is working on implementing an emergency waiver so that people who live paycheck to paycheck don’t have to wait that long...

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New state order extends school closures until at least April 24
Wisconsin schools will remain closed for in-person instruction and extracurricular activities until at least April 24 under the “Safer At Home” order issued Tuesday by Gov. Tony Evers and the state Department of Health Services.

The order, which limits business operations and individual activity to only those deemed essential beginning at 8 a.m. Wednesday, also will keep public and private K-12 schools closed. Facilities can still be used to facilitate virtual or distance learning activities and food distribution under the order.
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UW System to launch new EApp electronic application

MADISON (WLUK) — University of Wisconsin System announced today the creation of a new electronic application system, EApp, to be launched this fall for prospective students applying to attend a UW System university.

The new EApp will provide reduced application fees, offer easier navigation, and allow first-time undergraduate applicants to apply to more than one UW System school.

The UW System Board of Regents will vote Thursday on adopting the new application.

“As I traveled the state, visiting our campuses and meeting students as part of our All In Wisconsin tour, one consistent piece of advice I heard was to simplify admissions, particularly the application process,” UW System President Ray Cross said. “We have taken that advice, and I am excited to see the results this fall and going forward.”

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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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SBDC marks 40th anniversary; Helped dozens of business owners helped in Barron County

Wisconsin, among the nation’s first Small Business Development Center networks, will observe the 40th anniversary of the SBDC with celebrations across the state on Wednesday, March 18, 2020, according to a Monday, March 2, press release from the University of Wisconsin System.

Small Business Development Center counseling has helped dozens of business owners and, indirectly, hundreds of employees across Barron County, noted Dave Armstrong, director of the Barron County Economic Development Corporation.

“We’ve used the UW-Eau Claire SBDC so often that they send (Eau Claire SBDC director) Luke Kempen to Rice Lake every Thursday to meet with (local clients),” Armstrong said March 2. “They have been integral to every (small business project) we have done.”

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WHEDA awarded Capital Magnet Fund
The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund has awarded the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority a Capital Magnet Fund grant of $3,375,000.

For fiscal year 2019, the U.S. Treasury awarded a total of $130.9 million in grants nationwide to 38 organizations for the development of affordable housing and community facilities in low-income communities. WHEDA was the only awardee in Wisconsin and since 2016 has received four consecutive awards totaling more than $17.8 million.

Nationwide, a total of 113 organizations requested more than $522 million from the Capital Magnet Fund for the FY 2019 round, highlighting the competitive nature of the program.
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Wisconsin 4-H Foundation receives $10 grand
 The Wisconsin 4-H Foundation recently recognized partner AgCountry Farm Credit Services as a top 4-H donor. Acknowledged as a Platinum Clover supporter, AgCountry FCS contributed $10,000 to support Wisconsin 4-H programs through the Wisconsin 4-H Foundation. 

“We are proud to support the Wisconsin 4-H Foundation and all the amazing work they do,” says AgCountry Farm Credit Services CEO Marc Knisely. “4-H provides the resources and opportunities necessary to help participants develop their leadership skills and establishes a solid foundation for the future.” You can find out more about AgCountry FCS at their website, www.agcountry.com.

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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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Wisconsin Governor announces Harbor Assistance Program grants

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers last month announced two grants under the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s Harbor Assistance Program.

One, worth $29 million, is for improvements needed at the Port of Marinette to allow for the production of the next generation of Navy ships. The other, worth $4.9 million, will support the construction of a new agricultural commodity bulk vessel transload facility at Port Milwaukee.

The grant to the Port of Marinette will support continuation of shipbuilder Fincantieri Marinette Marine’s site improvement project. That project includes the construction of a vertical ship lift structure, dock walls and bulkheads and harbor dredging to transition the shipyard to accommodate the construction of larger vessels...

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Vilas County urging seasonal homeowners to not return to Vilas County

Vilas County Government has issued an inter-county travel advisory.

According to a news release, Vilas County is recommending you stay in your home area if you have a seasonal or second home in Vilas County.

If you are already back at a seasonal home, you must immediately self-isolate for 14-days.

Vilas County has one of the highest populations of older adults in Wisconsin...

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Ken Notes: They closed the north woods now I have seen everything...

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Palmer-Donavin finds success with Beloit plant

BELOIT—It was a big year for Palmer-Donavin as it settled into a new home in Beloit.

The company’s relocation from Rockford in early December 2018 marked a $16 million expansion.

Seal-Rite Door Division (renamed to Palmer-Donavin in January 2020) moved into a 105,000-square-foot building. Located at 375 Willowbrook Road, by the intersection of Stateline and Willowbrook roads, off Interstate 90 in the Wisconsin Stateline Industrial Park, the building has been owned and managed by Hendricks Commercial Properties (HCP)...

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Safer at Home order could cost Wisconsin`s golf industry millions of dollars, leaders say

With golf courses and country clubs across Wisconsin temporarily closed under the state`s Safer at Home order, course operators and associations in the state are fearful the closures will significantly stymie revenue the sport generates in Wisconsin. An online petition called `Let Wisconsin Golf` intended for Gov. Tony Evers` office launched Wednesday and as of 5 p.m. Thursday, had received more than 23,000 of its 25,000-signature goal.

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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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How to Start a Business in Wisconsin
Thinking of starting a business in Wisconsin? The Badger State has a highly rated education system but a relatively heavy burden of regulation compared to other states. The combination makes it an enticing but challenging place to start a business. If you’re thinking of starting a business in Wisconsin, here’s what you need to know.

Make a Business Plan

begins with planning. The first choice is of a product or service to offer. Most business owners select an offering that joins their skills or passions with market opportunity." data-reactid="26">Successfully starting a Wisconsin business begins with planning. The first choice is of a product or service to offer. Most business owners select an offering that joins their skills or passions with market opportunity...

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Daily life still is changing lightning-fast
Responses to COVID-19 continued to ramp up over the past week as Washburn County in tandem with the world tried to limit the spread.

In Wisconsin, a overriding change came with an order from Gov. Tony Evers that banned non-essential travel in the state and shut all non-essential businesses until Friday, April 24, or until the order is superseded.

The first cases of the virus in the northern part of the state were confirmed last week, and by Tuesday, March 24, one case was confirmed in Bayfield County, two in Chippewa County, four in Douglas County, four in Eau Claire County, and four in St. Croix County....
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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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