Lawmakers Clash On Tracking Foxconn Jobs
Audit shows subsidy could reward out-of-state jobs; Fitzgerald and Shilling differ on need to fix this.
Wisconsin lawmakers are at odds over the importance of a new audit that questions how the state tracks jobs created by Foxconn Technology Group.
The audit, prepared by the Legislature’s audit bureau, found Wisconsin is at risk of awarding tax credits to Foxconn for out-of-state jobs.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said he spoke with the head of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., which oversees the state’s contract with Foxconn, after the report was released. Fitzgerald said the audit overstates the scope of the problem, because the type of out-of-state employee described could be as a few as “one guy.”
However, Democratic state Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling, D-La Crosse, is calling for more audits of Foxconn job creation in the wake of the report. She pointed out WEDC has been subject to a number of negative audits since its creation.
“Now to find out that Foxconn would be eligible for tax credits for employees (who) are working remotely and not even in Wisconsin and don’t live here … that is troubling,” Shilling said.
Democrats have questioned WEDC’s ability to effectively track Foxconn job creation and retention since the deal’s inception. Shilling said consistent third-party audits of WEDC’s tracking of Foxconn job creation would bolster public trust in the state’s economic development agency.
Fitzgerald acknowledged further audits are likely in the agency’s future.
“In the history of this state, I don’t think there’s been any agency that’s been as audited and as scrutinized as WEDC and, whether I like it or not, it’s going to continue,” he said.
Foxconn has said it plans to create up to 13,000 jobs and invest up to $13 billion at its future manufacturing facility in Mount Pleasant. The state has committed to paying up to $3 billion in tax credits for job creation and the company’s construction costs.
Listen to the WPR report here.
Fitzgerald, Shilling Clash Over Importance Of Foxconn Job-Tracking Audit was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.
- Foxconn Hosts Smart Manufacturing Web Conference, Launches iAI Institute - Foxconn Technology Group - Jul 10th, 2020
- Foxconn Will Make 10K Ventilators - Corri Hess - Jun 19th, 2020
- Medtronic and Foxconn Partner to Increase Ventilator Production - Foxconn Technology Group - Jun 18th, 2020
- Foxconn Audit Delayed Two Months - Erik Gunn - Jun 3rd, 2020
- Back in the News: Foxconn’s Profits Plunge By 90% - Bruce Murphy - May 19th, 2020
- Foxconn to Assemble Procedural Masks in Wisconsin for Pandemic Relief - Foxconn Technology Group - Apr 20th, 2020
- Murphy’s Law: Foxconn Squeezes Evers - Bruce Murphy - Apr 15th, 2020
- Foxconn Says It Earned Tax Credits - Corri Hess - Apr 9th, 2020
- Back in the News: Foxconn Plant Will Make Ventilators - Bruce Murphy - Apr 8th, 2020
- Op Ed: Foxconn Facility Could Help in Pandemic - James Rowen - Mar 29th, 2020
Read more about Foxconn Facility here