WEDC report says agency awarded $245 million during last fiscal year

WEDC Website

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:07 am

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., the state’s job creation agency, awarded more than $245 million in bonds, grants, investor credits, loans and tax credits in the 2015 fiscal year, according to the WEDC’s annual report.

The WEDC report says its 2015 fiscal year investments resulted in the creation of 7,496 jobs and the retention of 19,326. Additionally, projects contracted with WEDC during the fiscal year are expected to result in over $1.2 billion in capital investments in the state, according to the report.

The report will be reviewed by the WEDC Board at its meeting on Sept. 24. The final report will be submitted to the state Legislature by Oct. 1.

WEDC Website
WEDC Website

“WEDC continues to fulfill its mission of supporting business development in Wisconsin through innovative programs and responsive service delivery,” said Tricia Braun, deputy secretary and chief operating officer for WEDC.

However, the WEDC has had numerous problems and faced significant criticism. A state audit this year revealed several of the companies to which the WEDC has awarded state funds have not been thoroughly vetted or tracked. Some of those companies have failed, while some others have not met job creation promises upon which the funding was contingent.

The WEDC was created by Gov. Scott Walker in 2011 to replace the state Department of Commerce. Mark Hogan, a former executive for M&I Bank and BMO Harris Bank, was recently named the new chief executive officer for the WEDC, by Walker. Hogan is the third CEO named for the agency.

A draft of the WEDC annual report is available here.

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Andrew is the editor of BizTimes Milwaukee. He joined BizTimes in 2003, serving as managing editor and real estate reporter for 11 years. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, he is a lifelong resident of the state. He lives in Muskego with his wife, Seng, their son, Zach, and their dog, Hokey. He is an avid sports fan and is a member of the Muskego Athletic Association board of directors.

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