Advocating for Wisconsin
Ken [at] KenHarwood.com
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Wisconsin Public Television tells the story of civil rights leader Vel Phillips. Discover how Vel Phillips achieved an impressive list of "firsts" as part of her legacy, including the first African American judge in Wisconsin and the first woman, and African American, in the nation elected to executive office in state government....
Sign the petition to add a statue to the state capitol here... ...more
Ken Notes:One of the best hours I have spent in some time. Watch this video and then come back and sign the petition!
The 43rd Ryder Cup,
which was supposed to be held this September at Whistling Straits in
Sheboygan County, has officially been rescheduled for 2021 due to the
COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Tournament organizers PGA of America, Ryder Cup Europe and the PGA Tour announced Wednesday that the biennial men’s golf competition will take place Sept. 21 to 26, 2021 at Whistling Straits. It was originally scheduled for Sept. 22 to 27.
Ryder Cup is a men’s professional golf competition held every other
year that pits an American team against a European team and is known for
its lively crowds, far more enthusiastic than at a typical golf
Ken Notes: Nooooooooooo.... This will still be huge for Wisconsin and having crowds makes RC special but waiting a whole year is just sad.
Small businesses impacted by COVID-19 can now apply for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s $75 million grant program.
The “We’re All In” grant offers small businesses $2,500 grants, which can be used for health and safety improvements to reopen, wages, salaries, rent, mortgage payments, and inventory.
The online application became available this morning at 8 a.m. and will remain open until 11:59 p.m. on June 23, WEDC recently announced. Grant eligibility requirements include businesses with 20 or fewer full-time employees and with an annual revenue of less than $1 million... ...more
Ken Notes: First Thank You. But I am wondering if we would not be better served by using funds to offset interest on loans which would seem to allow for more leverage. At 2.5% the State could partner with banks to offer $100,000 interest free loan for a year. The banks would also provide the due diligence that the state will never be able to preform. Like the payment of unemployment benefits to those not truly eligible, the $2,500 will most definitely find there way to those not qualified to actually receive them and you really can not blame WEDC for this they are reviewing thousands of applications with limited staff.
Madison officials are moving forward on a forgivable loan program aimed at supporting Madison business owners transitioning from renting to owning their own commercial property.
The Commercial Ownership Assistance program, which could launch this year as a pilot program with $500,000, is meant to support entrepreneurship and create wealth in communities that have historically faced barriers to purchasing commercial property.
It would also address one aspect of racial disparities in Madison. People of color in Madison represent about 27% of the city’s population but make up between 3% and 9% of business owners, according to the city... ...more
Ken Notes: I like this program. We need to offer an educational component as well because many people of color and lower socioeconomic levels do not know how a business is started and run successfully...
WEDC has extended the deadline for the We’re All In $2,500 Small Business Grants to 11:59 p.m. on Friday, June 26th.
For additional information including FAQs, feel free to refer to website at www.wedc.org and click on the We’re All In banner. (Note: This article will take you there!) ...more
Ken Notes: WEDC is working with small businesses to move forward post Covid-19. They have also led the charge on how to reopen safely. My guess is, and it is just a guess, that they may have more money than requests, so I encourage small businesses effected by Covid-19 to click this link and see if you qualify. Also this is worth sharing, you small business friends will like you even more if you net them $ 2,500...
MADISON (WKOW) -- Boys & Girls Clubs of Dane County President and
CEO Michael Johnson, a longtime advocate for Madison`s Black community,
is calling on leaders to come together and speak up.
Johnson spoke out Wednesday in open letter to Madison. In it, he offers ten solutions to racial injustice in Dane County.
1. Repurpose $8.6M or 10% of MPD’s budget to community policing,
mental health services and community policing strategies to be managed
by black led organizations who are culturally competent, including grass
root groups and other communities of color. ...more
Ken Notes: Go Michael! I have suggested we need direction and leadership to move forward and I can not think of a better man for the job. Also I admire an individual who practices what he preaches and Mr. Johnson exemplifies this every minute of every day...
After demonstrators against racial injustice toppled the “Forward” and Col. Hans Christian Heg statues last Tuesday at Capitol Square, community members have grappled with whether the art should be restored or replaced entirely.
say the fallen statues are a sore sight, but others see them as a
symbol of change in the community. As protests against racial injustice
continue throughout the city, the empty spaces that once held the
statues are a stark reminder of rising tensions and conflict within
Ken Notes: While I strongly support Michael`s efforts above, first we must we must restore the damage done because we can not suggest that destruction is the way to elicit change. I believe this is Mr. Johnson`s intent as well. This is a great article by the way!
“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.... ...more
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MADISON —? Gov. Tony Evers
today announced $1.5 million in grants to local, state and tribal
governments, regional planning commissions, universities and nonprofit
organizations through the Department of Administration’s (DOA) Wisconsin Coastal Management Program. In
its forty-second year, the Wisconsin Coastal Management Program aims to
protect and improve the Great Lakes resources across Wisconsin’s
coastal communities. The thirty-nine grants awarded this year will be
used by grantees to assist with projects totaling over $3.4 million.
“Wisconsin’s Great Lakes are some of our most important economic,
cultural and natural resources,” said Gov. Evers. “From safe drinking
water to tourism and recreation to commerce and transportation, we know
that protecting the health of Lake Michigan and Lake Superior is a key
to our state’s ability to thrive and support future generations.”.. ...more
Ken Notes:I have an idea for Governor Evers that would allow him to play to his strengths. Governor Evers is an educator and should be an advocate for education so here are a few new ideas not yet on the table and he is welcome to steal any or all of them.
Regarding Black Lives Matter
Ask every public safety officer and administrator, directly or indirectly receiving state funds, to take 100 hours of specific continuing education over the next five year with the first 20 hours being required in the first 3 months.
- Ask ever elected official in the state to watch a video educational presentation on community policing, and inclusionary practices.
- Work with local businesses, the federal government, and all educational institutions to offer every black student in our secondary system an opportunity for an apprenticeship program, or tuition free tech school or college. (note: I would also offer EVERY student an interest free tuition loan as long as they remain in the State).
On Covid 19
- Ask every public post secondary institution to offer a series of free classes on what is available to small businesses to deal with the recovering economy.
- Use some of the state and federal funds to pay the interest and defer repayment of business and homeowner loans. (i.e. at 2.5% interest 2,500 dollars would allow a 50,000 dollar loan to be deferred for two years, and then repaid at $350 per month.)
- Finally ask the best and brightest in the UW and Tech systems to provide free online business courses for small business and entrepreneurial startups.
I would start with Joe Shumow from Reinhart Law teaching anything on real estate he is brilliant!!!
Milwaukee-based software company Jet Constellations is launching a $50 million dollar fund through its social impact arm, The Milky Way Tech Hub. A main focus of the fund will be to invest in tech companies owned by people of color and other underrepresented individuals.
The new fund is being launched in partnership with New York-based company IP Zone Co., which spun off from American Express into an information technology and services company... ...more
Ken Notes: Thank you, now we need to get to our minority youth and mentor them through the process of education, networking, and business skills so they can take advantage of what is out there for them. We have neglected too many generations and as great as they are these opportunities are not impacting our youth early enough for them to see the value of education and obtaining skill sets to get ahead...
Monday night, the Dane County Plan Commission approved the Oscar Mayer Special Area Plan, a supplement to the City of Madison Comprehensive Plan, that include changes to the development planned for Madison`s north side.
As part of the plan, 14.1 acres will be reserved for wetlands and open space. The supplement approves space for new housing up to 2,780 units, including 395 units of high-density affordable housing to be built on the Hartmeyer Natural Area, 30 acres of wetlands located behind the Oscar Mayer factory. The proposed project will connect the north and east side, and the area would become a public transit and bicycle hub, as well as create a walkable commercial district and mixed-use area and major employment corridor... ...more
Wisconsin has the worst economic racial equality of any state in the U.S. according to a new study.
Wallethub.com conducted a study mapping eight metrics including median annual household income, labor force participation rate, the rate of home ownership, poverty rates, among others.
According to the study’s findings, Wisconsin has some of the highest disparities between Black and white people when it comes to median annual income, labor force participation rate, poverty rate and unemployment. Wisconsin ranked last out of all 50 states on all of the previous criteria except unemployment, which Wisconsin ranked 48th in. ...more
Ken Notes: I believe we can and must fix this. One of the solutions would be to create, even mandate, socioeconomic diverse neighborhoods and communities. We need to create opportunity for ownership at every income level. We need to shift from a hand out to hand up mentality. We need smaller affordable housing in EVERY neighborhood.
We need education that offers school to work transitional opportunities so everyone leaving our public schools has a path to a better future. We do a great job of college prep but fail those entering the workforce directly. Apprenticeship programs need to be exponentially increased in the state. We need programs for students to explore various careers. We need more mentors and private sector programs to offer youth safe places to explore there future.
Finally we need to find acceptance of our fellow Wisconsinites. I offer one final observation, this weekend my wife and I went camping at Big foot State Beach state park in Lake Geneva. The park was almost full and included many people of color, every socioeconomic level (tents (me) to motor homes worth far more than my house), and children playing in the streets. We enjoyed the conversations with our neighbors, respected the work done by the wonderful staff, and enjoyed the facilities immensely. Most days we (and most other campers) left for hours leaving all our worldly positions for anyone to take, yet felt, safe, secure, and welcome. I do not fully understand why we can not get to this level of understanding in our cities and communities.
COVID-19 has triggered a sharp economic slowdown. Separately, some of the Black Lives Matter protests have focused on African Americans and other non-white groups trailing Caucasians in average household income.
Can more business innovation be a partial solution to both issues? Some people think so.
Wisconsin and the nation continue to have double-digit unemployment rates, largely due to business cutbacks during the COVID-19 pandemic. On Monday, the state begins accepting applications for a $75 million federally-funded small business recovery grant program called We`re All In... ...more
Ken Notes: Yes innovation is key. We should also look at emerging markets like renewable energy, next generation automotive, pop up retail and dining, health care research and diagnostics, technology, and education. We MUST present paths to success at earlier ages with opportunities for everyone. How many graduates from our high schools know what a business plan is much less how to draft one. We need to get Dana and Nadiyah in front of our youth!!!
We will power our communities and empower cooperative members
to improve the quality of their lives.
To date, Garver Feed Mill has received 4 awards including a Merit Award for architectural excellence from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Wisconsin and the 2020 Historic Preservation Award for Adaptive Reuse from the Madison Trust for Historic Preservation.
Garver Feed Mill Receives Award from the Wisconsin Historical Society
Madison, WI. – The Wisconsin Historical Society is excited to announce that Baum Revision is therecipient of the 2020 Historic Restoration Award for their role in the preservation of the GarverFeed Mill in Madison, WI.
“I extend my congratulations to Baum Revision, and all the firms and individuals who made the rehabilitation of the Garver Feed Mill possible,” said Christian Overland, Ruth and Hartley Barker Director& CEO of the Wisconsin Historical Society. “The Restoration Award recognizes the effort to bring new lifeto the former Feed Mill. With its focus on food and health, the restored and repurposed building willcontinue as an important surviving link between Madison and its regional agricultural heritage.”..
Ken Notes: It has been fun to follow this for the last several years and it is truly a special project. I hope it continues to thrive as we return to whatever normalcy looks like post Covid-19...
Businesses Reopen With Coronavirus Precautions In Place To Protect Customers, Employees
Excited. Lucky. Cautious. Those are just a few of the ways people returning to work are feeling about the chance to get back into the office during a pandemic that has forced 14 percent of Wisconsinites out of a job.
Ben Barmore, 22, recently returned to work at Creative Learning Preschool and Child Care Center in Madison. The day care closed its doors in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19, but reopened on June 1.
"I was very excited to get back to work," Barmore said one morning as he walked to the day care. "Just because I feel with the right safety precautions in place, it’s the best thing for the kids to have that routine."
As a precaution, employees take their temperature daily and watch for other signs they might be infected with the coronavirus...
Members of the newly formed Campus Neighborhood Association met Thursday night to begin reviewing proposed bylaws and plans for the group, which include securing a larger role in development projects of Madison neighborhoods with large concentrations of students.
Geographic boundaries of the organization comprise areas where students live who do not have a current neighborhood association in place. That includes the State-Langdon area, south of campus, and the on-campus residence halls. ...more
Buyers already struggling to find affordable homes in Wisconsin found their options dwindle in May as the coronavirus pandemic caused a steep decline in sales and new listings.
The result: Compared with May 2019, sales were down 25.8%, the median purchase price rose 6% to $214,000 and the inventory of starter homes in the $125,000 to $199,000 price range dropped to less than three months — meaning that`s how long it would take to be sold out at the current pace. ...more
Ken Notes:I am getting mixed messages here there is demand so this should rebound quickly. We have unfortunately widened the gap between the haves and have nots. We need affordable product for our service and retail workers and it is not there.
- Overall, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a negative impact on propensity to move to independent living and assisted living, although the largest decrease in the proportion of those very likely to move to independent living among all respondent groups was only 6 percentage points. In fact, COVID-19 slightly increased the proportion of assisted living lead prospects who were very likely to move. The results suggest that the most serious or hottest prospects are still planning to move, but those who were less likely to move to begin with are delaying or tablingth e decision.
- Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, prospects were more likely to take action with respect to their potential move to a retirement community. Pre-COVID, a greater proportion of prospects were looking at information, visiting communities, talking with counselors, and contacting communities online. Currently, greater proportions of prospects are in the “thinking” stage or are in a holding pattern.
- Among those households who have considered moving to a retirement community within the past year, the majority of both prospectsand adult children.....
Ken Notes:The report at the link is very beneficial to anyone in this sector.
We need to rethink senior housing. The boomers do not want to end up in the "homes" like our parents and grandparents. We need lifestyle opportunities with healthcare nearby, as well as dining, theatre, music, and other amenities for the living not the...
SUN PRAIRIE — One of Dane County’s major regional shopping destinations is getting a significant addition.
Meijer, a Michigan-based company that operates stores that sell a combination of general merchandise and groceries, has announced plans for a 200,000-square-foot store along with a convenience store to be built along Highway 151 on Sun Prairie’s west side... ...more
Ken Notes: I love Meijer... and of course Sun gets it because Sun get everything. I may need to buy a condo over there just to go shopping!
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People filing for
unemployment can wait more than a month for claims to come through, and
one Wisconsin lawmaker is venting his frustration.
A Wisconsin lawmaker is blasting the state Department of Workforce
Development after officials said it can take more than a month for
Wisconsin residents to hear back after filing an unemployment request.
Sen. Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) expressed his frustrations in a statement
Tuesday, citing recent department hires that seemingly should have
stemmed the wait time for unemployment claims...
Ken Notes: I suggest that everyone seeking unemployment benefits contact the Senators offices for assistance with their claim. It will be interesting to see how their staff deals with 150 CALLS PER SECOND!!! I continue to applaud the efforts made by DWD in very difficult times. Let not point fingers lets work together to solve our problems...
As the outbreak of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 was
deemed a pandemic, research institutions across the United States
rapidly shifted focus to studies aimed at understanding the virus and
The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health is among them and has responded to the demand in a big way.
Through pharmaceutical industry collaborations, partnerships with
other academic and medical institutions, and its own clinical trial
expertise, SMPH and its companion academic health system, UW Health, has
in three months launched several clinical trials aimed at developing
treatments for COVID-19 and better understanding the disease.
Among the latest clinical trials
is a study conducted in partnership with the pharmaceutical company
Novartis examining the potential for an existing drug called ruxolitinib
to treat a serious and often deadly complication of a COVID-19
infection called cytokine storm. Locally, the study is being led by
David Andes, professor of medicine in the infectious disease division at
Ken Notes: I believe the solution for Covid-19 treatment and a vaccine may come through the UW, UWRP, WARF, and the businesses they have grown. It is the Wisconsin Idea and it serves us well! Go Bucky!!!
According to a new report released Tuesday by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., wage and salary income across Wisconsin and the nation will fall by 9% in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which will be detrimental to the state`s economic activity.
By 2021, however, wages in the state will grow 7%, more than double the percentage growth for wages in Wisconsin in 2019 of 3.2%, as the state`s economy rebounds from the economic fallout caused by businesses shutting down due to the virus.... ...more
Ken Notes: Or longer, the key will be to prevent the winner/loser scenarios that were so prevalent during the last several economic downturns. We bailed out banks while the foreclosed on millions of homes. We gave money to industries who in turn fired millions of employees. Investors quickly sold off stocks and bought back at the bottom to make exponential profits while our 401K`s stayed in the market for the "long haul" they came back but other made millions...
A site developed for Milwaukee but helpful for everyone StayHomeMKE.com
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.
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.
Wisconsin students across the state adapted to the new normal with e-Learning studies since the Badger State entered the “Safer at Home” status in late March. If you live in a metro area, you probably didn’t struggle with lack of service or low bandwidth. But in the rural areas, it was a big challenge.
In rural areas, locally owned and operated telecommunications cooperatives are oftentimes residents’ only source of internet access outside of cell phones, whose coverage can be spotty at best. Many rural co-ops rose to the challenge during the coronavirus pandemic by beefing up their bandwidth for current customers at no charge or offering free upgrades. For new customers, some co-ops waived installation fees or allowing free access for a certain period... ...more
Ken Notes: I wish our legislature were informed as to the potential of 5G in rural Wisconsin. If we to not get in the mix now we will see 5G only in areas where there is density (money).
Startups need money. State and local governments need startups and the employment growth they offer. It should be obvious that the two groups can work together and make each other happy. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth.
Each year, governments spend tens of billions of dollars on economic development incentives designed to attract employers and jobs to their communities. There are a huge number of challenges, however, for startups and individual contributors trying to apply for these programs... ...more
Report Details How State Spent $13.7B In Federal And State Aid
A report from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. that
was released on Monday points to teaching those dealing with
unemployment new skills; entrepreneurship; and broadband access as key
ways to mitigate the impact COVID-19 has had on the state`s economy.
The report, which was requested by the state Legislature, details the
ways in which Wisconsin has spent $13.7 billion in federal and state
aid during the first few months of the pandemic to avoid business closures and job losses.
"This is a really complex problem that we`re facing as a state and as a nation," WEDC Secretary and CEO Missy Hughes said on WPR`s "The Morning Show."
"This is not a tornado touching down in a small town in the middle of
Wisconsin. This is something that has impacted every business, every
community and every person in the whole state. Solutions moving forward
need to take that into consideration."...
Ken Notes:We talk broadband but we ignore the elephant in the room. If we leveraged the right to have 5G in our cities with a commitment to rural 5G we would not have a Broadband problem just a few year from now. Instead we are letting the providers dictate the terms. And to make matter worse they profit from our investment in older rural technologies.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) -The push is on to get Wisconsinites back to work, even though the way businesses operate and the kind of industries that thrive are changing.
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation has released a report highlighting the need for new training for many people still out of work, and the Secretary of Workforce Development is telling us what’s being done to help them.
Despite the challenges of busy signals and being booted off websites, DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman wants people to continue trying to file for unemployment assistance.
With new call centers, he tells Action 2 News went from handling 2,000 calls a day to 12,000 on Tuesday, and is also trying to improve its antiquated online capabilities... ...more
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Wisconsinites have filed thousands of unemployment claims since the beginning of the coronavirus.
But with all of the unemployment news, it`s easy to miss out on what you need to know, like the number of claims that have been filed, how many have been paid out and the latest on the extra $600 in federal assistance.
Here`s what you need to know.
How many unemployment claims have been made?
Since the start of the pandemic, which the state lists as March 15, more than 3.76 million weekly claims have been received by the department and nearly 3.2 million of those have already been paid out, according to the Department of Workforce Development`s latest data, which runs through June 27.
The number of claims paid out includes those that have gone through adjudication already. ...more
Ken Notes:Again it is easy to be mad at DWD, but it was not easy to be DWD. If you are one who is pointing fingers remember that three of them are pointing back at you...
Developer Rick Barrett says he has secured the remaining needed
equity for The Couture, the long-planned 44-story luxury residential
tower near the lakefront in downtown Milwaukee, and has resubmitted the
project for a loan guarantee through the U.S. Department of Housing and
The $122 million project is planned southwest of Michigan Street and
Lincoln Memorial Drive. Barrett, founder and chief executive of
Milwaukee-based Barrett Lo Visionary Development, first unveiled plans
for The Couture in 2012. But vertical construction still has not
commenced, and Barrett has been working to secure enough equity to
resubmit an application for the HUD guarantee. Barrett Lo’s previous loan application expired in July 2019... ...more
Ken Notes: I am surprised he can build this for 122 million...
The University of Wisconsin-Madison will reopen Sept. 2 for the fall semester with free access to COVID-19 testing, required face coverings and a balance between online and in-person teaching.
Chancellor Rebecca Blank said at a news briefing Wednesday that the “Smart Restart” reopening plan outlines a flexible, hybrid approach to prioritize community safety without sacrificing high-quality education. It was developed with input from a cross-campus team of representatives and local, state and federal public health guidance, Blank said. ...more
The state Department of Public Instruction “expects schools to reopen in the fall,” it told school district administrators in an email Friday.
The message, posted on DPI’s COVID-19 updates website, also says the department anticipates releasing guidance on returning to school amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic on June 22... ...more
City first ordered mall buildings to come down in April 2019
The owner of the former Northridge Mall on Milwaukee`s far northwest side is appealing a judge`s decision that the buildings be demolished. The former mall buildings, located northwest of West Brown Deer Road and North… ...more
Ken Notes: As a Mayor and Alderman I often found it worked best to light a fire under some issues to move them forward. The Northridge Mall owner is now painfully aware that it is time to find an adaptive reuse of the property as in now stands or make way for a new project.
Ken Notes: Wow this is beautiful...
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.
During a time of uncertainty people may have lost their jobs or even their entire business forcing them to look elsewhere for income.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, The University of Wisconsin Stevens Point (UWSP) is offering a free chance for anyone to continue their education.
"These are actually what we consider non-credit or training and development courses so they are open to the public, they don`t have to go through the admissions process but we have them register and have customer service to support their experience," said Wayne Sorenson, Director of Continuing Education Outreach at UWSP... ...more
Ken Notes:Way cool!
New dog park concept Bark Social aims to attract both canines and
humans and to help landlords activate outdoor spaces. Co-founders Luke
Silverman and Jeff Kurtzman have just inked their first lease at Federal
Realty’s Pike & Rose property in North Bethesda, Maryland, and are
set to open Sept. 1.
Silverman, who also is CEO, and his pit bull-lab, Frankie, visited
more than 20 social dog parks across the country and found one thing
missing: Many left out retail. Bark Social thus combines entertainment,
food-and-beverage and retail in one venue. The 25,000-square-foot
prototype features mainly outdoor play and exercise areas for pets, a
2,400-square-foot open-air pavilion for inclement weather and a
1,200-1,500-square-foot clubhouse.. ...more
Ken Notes: This is pretty smart business, I would love a coffee or sandwich concession at the dog park in Verona...
The Extended Benefits Are Part Of The CARES Act, A Federal Coronavirus Stimulus Bill
The state’s Department of Workforce Development announced Wednesday that some Wisconsinites who’ve exhausted their unemployment benefits can now apply for an additional 13 weeks of assistance.
The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program was created as part of the CARES Act, the federal coronavirus stimulus bill passed by Congress in March. People who’ve already received 26 weeks of unemployment insurance, typically the limit, can apply for the benefit through DWD, according to a news release from the agency.
"The added 13 weeks of benefits will provide financial support to thousands of Wisconsinites who remain out of work through this difficult time in our state,” DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman said in a statement...
GE Healthcare’s Wauwatosa campus will lose 123 employees, including many high-level professionals, as the company transfers part of its United States commercial team to the corporate headquarters in Chicago and other regional offices.
The company said the last day of work for the employees at 9900 W. Innovation Drive will be on Aug. 31, according to a notice GE Healthcare filed with the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. The company said in January the Wauwatosa location would be impacted by the transfers. ...more
The economic fallout from COVID-19 is creating uncertainties for the timing and even development of the long-planned, $13.2 million Madison Public Market on the East Side, Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway said.
But the nonprofit Madison Public Market Foundation, which would run the market in a city-owned building, is imploring policymakers to stay the course, saying adjustments can be made and the market is just what the city needs in coming years to support a diverse mix of entrepreneurs and boost a recovery... ...more
Ken Notes:Like the finally successful Garver Mill, we need a group to drive this from the private sector and then get the cities support. The city is very good at a lot of things but profitable economic development is not their strongest suit. Golf (3.3 million), PAC (2 Million), Menona Terrace (14 million)...
The Milwaukee Art Museum has announced that it will begin a phased reopening of its galleries to the public in the summer, with new protocols developed to ensure the safety of staff and visitors.
The Museum’s “Safer with Art” plan includes robust cleaning procedures, the installation of hand sanitizing stations at entrance points and throughout the galleries, and the requirement that all staff and visitors wear cloth face coverings. A dedicated pathway through the Collection Galleries on the Museum’s main level will encourage and emphasize proper social distancing, and a new digital timed-ticketing system will be part of an overall touchless experience inside the Museum. Priority hours will be reserved for first responders, and those among vulnerable populations. The Museum also utilizes a MERV15 air filtration in the campus HVAC system, which is considered hospital grade. Additionally, admission during Phase One will be free for one month, thanks to The Krei Family in Memory of Melinda. ...more
The Notes: Lakefront in Milwaukee is such a special place, this is a great sign that normalcy will eventually return. I have my kites packed and am ready to get over there....
Despite market uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, a developer is moving forward with the final piece of the $36 million-plus Yahara Commons project along the Yahara River which when completed will be the biggest in the city of Monona in two decades.
The Galway Cos. has secured final approvals and will begin construction next month on a five-story building with 145 apartments, rooftop pool and terrace, and two levels of underground parking with 283 spaces that will be shared with the city to serve a 0.6-acre park that’s part of the city’s contribution to the overall, three-phase redevelopment. ...more
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In July of 2019, we purchased an anaerobic digester northwest of Madison, WI with the promise that we would convert 90,000 gallons per day of dairy waste we got from local farms into biogas and other useful products.
This past week, we made good on that promise to produce renewable natural gas from this process when we delivered the first load of RNG (Renewable Natural Gas) to Dane County to be used as fuel that powers fleets of RNG vehicles across the United States.
Oh, and did we mention this is a first-of-its-kind project?
This is just another chapter in our mission to reduce greenhouse gas... ...more
Ken Notes: I hope these project prove cost effective and then I would love to see us work with CAFOs to digest all of our waste from large facilities and then heat the effluent before disposal. Now we liquefy the wast and pump it miles from the source. It ends up in our wetlands, streams and lakes and we turn a blind eye to the problem.
Wisconsin is among 10 states that have seen growing problems with nitrate contamination in drinking water, according to a new report by Environmental Working Group (EWG).
Nitrate contamination stems from a variety of sources, including farm
runoff and leaking septic tanks or sewage. Long-term exposure to excess
nitrate levels can cause blue-baby syndrome
— a condition that affects how oxygen is transported through the blood.
Nitrate exposure in infants under six months can cause serious illness
or death... ...more
Ken Notes: See...
Hear from construction and development newsmakers live at 2 p.m. every Wednesday as The Daily Reporter goes beyond the headlines with the people shaping the industry.
From getting work and making money during a pandemic, to training, to returning to the office or job site, every week we’ll discuss topics important to you with the men and women leading the way.... ...more
Milwaukee County officials will wait to consider a proposal to allow a privately developed business park to replace a shelved University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee plan to develop research buildings in Wauwatosa.
The decision to postpone again was due to concerns about the limits on public participation brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
"I want to be respectful of the public and hear their voices in regards to this item," said Supervisor Felesia Martin, who chairs the County Board`s Economic and Community Development Committee that was slated to consider the measure Monday. ...more
Around 11K Clean Energy Workers Have Filed For Unemployment
The clean energy sector has been one of the fastest-growing in the state in recent years. But now, more than 11,000 such workers are out of job due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to a study released Thursday.
Clean energy jobs can range from installing renewable energy projects like wind and solar to improving energy efficiency through weatherizing or rehabilitating buildings. At the end of 2019, Wisconsin had 76,685 people who were working in the clean energy sector, mostly in energy efficiency jobs....
Ken Notes: I promise this sector will bounce back quickly! There is simply too much potential for growth...
Milwaukee leaders in diversifying employment said mentorship, inclusivity and location will grow the pipeline of diverse, talented employees in the region.
Dr. Vicki Martin, president of the Milwaukee Area Technical College, told a Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce webinar that internal training and shepherding individuals to assume greater roles within an organization is key to recruiting and retaining diverse talent in the workforce.
“Support and mentoring… is just absolutely critical as we move forward,” she said. “But I think really looking at hiring and our systems of hiring and retention and what do those look like and making sure that we have anti-racist systems in place.”... ...more
MILWAUKEE– One in five tobacco retailers in the City of Milwaukee sold tobacco or nicotine products to underage youth during 2019 compliance checks, according to newly released data from Wisconsin Wins. The 21% rate of sale in Milwaukee was a decrease from the previous year (25%), although the ten-year trend is up from 11% in 2009. Youth access rate in Milwaukee peaked in 2015 at 27%. Wisconsin Wins Access Rate Trend.
During the Wisconsin Wins compliance checks, minors attempt to purchase tobacco or nicotine products, including cheap, flavored cigarillos, cigarettes, e-cigarettes, or single cigarettes. If they are successful, a Milwaukee police officer working with the minors writes a ticket on the spot or retailers can choose to sign up for the MARTS program (Milwaukee Achieving Responsible Tobacco Sales) to avoid citation. ...more
Ken Notes: This is easy to stop. Create a team of one undercover officer and one youth interested in law enforcement. Preform a recorded sting operation then bring all the guilty owners in and remind them the ability to sell tobacco is a privilege not a right. Your MARTS program is on the right track here. Just make the offending owners appear in person.
Forgive the first ticket after appearance 2nd violation costs money third revokes license. Ask the press to report on your efforts and I promise the problem will be solved in weeks.
WI – More than 200 local jobs at the Briggs & Stratton production
facility in Wauwatosa will be eliminated after the company announced
recently it will move some of its production to New York.
Milwaukee-based company has alerted the Wisconsin Department of
Workforce Development that 228 jobs will be lost at the facility that
production of lawn tractors, riding mowers, snow throwers and power
washers will be moved out of the Burleigh plant and to the new location
at the end of August. The company announced that the operation will
completely wind down by the end of the year...
Ken Notes: I do not know what NY offered but Briggs & Stratton is a Wisconsin icon. This hurts and who wants a small engine built in NY...
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
The Wisconsin Economic Development Association (WEDA) recently presented Sen. Dan Feyen (R-Fond du Lac) with the 2020 “Champion of Economic Development” award for his leadership on legislative initiatives to drive economic growth and prosperity in Wisconsin.
The award is presented to state legislators who exemplify WEDA’s mission of promoting economic development and are committed to making Wisconsin a better place to live, work and do business through effective policies. Sen. Feyen earned the “Champion of Economic Development” designation for his work on key legislation during the 2019-20 legislative session, including Opportunity Zones legislation to encourage new investment in economically challenged communities across the state. ...more
After issuing a slew of denials, state regulators are now pushing to give federal pandemic aid to laid-off Wisconsinites with disabilities.
The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) is asking the U.S. Department of Labor to allow it to issue Pandemic Unemployment Assistance — a program under Congress` disaster stimulus bill — to unemployed workers who also receive federal disability benefits. DWD spokesman Ben Jedd on Tuesday said the agency had yet to hear the labor department’s response... ...more
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - The U.S. Department of Labor`s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Equal Rights Division of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.
The three-year agreement paves the way for the two agencies to work together more easily and to communicate more efficiently and effectively, providing an opportunity for the agencies to conduct joint investigations, conduct joint outreach, share training materials and other information as appropriate. WHD`s District Office in Minneapolis, Minnesota, signed the agreement. The office serves Minnesota and Wisconsin.
"The U.S. Department of Labor and the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development are committed to working together proactively to provide compliance assistance and worker rights information to Wisconsin`s employers," said Wage and Hour Regional Administrator Michael Lazzeri in Chicago, Illinois. "This agreement will help to promote greater engagement and dialogue with employers and employees in Wisconsin and ensure workers` rights are protected, while maximizing the efficiency of the work of both agencies." ...more
The latest edition of “The Wisconsin Portfolio” shows more than $450 million was raised by the state’s early stage companies in 2019, a record for any single year in Wisconsin.
The report by the Wisconsin Technology Council and its Tech Council Investor Networks showed 123 early stage deals – up from 121 in 2018 – with average and mean deal sizes growing significantly. ...more
Stay up to date by reading our MadREP Report, a bi-monthly newsletter that features regional economic development news, events and opportunities.
County Educators Say Broadband Access Remains A Major Barrier For Youth, Volunteers
Before the Trempealeau County Fair was canceled, 4-H member Mara Quarne had planned to show several of her animals at the fair, including a heifer and a few sheep....
...But some county 4-H educators say connecting online isn’t possible for all participants and volunteers. Andrea Rippley, 4-H program coordinator for Trempealeau and Jackson counties, said much of her region lacks reliable internet and cell service....
Ken Notes: Two things. One support 4-H and FFA programs! Second please consider advocating for global coverage of 5G technology which can provide wireless high speed internet across the state. This will NOT happen unless we leverage access to high density regions with rural coverage. There is little or no leadership advocating for this at the state level...
The public-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation will provide a $106,000 grant for a new bakery in downtown Beaver Dam.
Jim and Ruth Metz are planning to re-develop a building on Front Street into a Great Harvest Bakery and Cafe, a chain shop, right downtown. The project is expected to be completed by July 2021 with an estimated investment of more than $900,000.
The Metzes, who founded Animart, also opened Ooga Brewing Company on South Spring Street with a WEDC grant last year. The Great Harvest project was announced last month... ...more
Ken Notes: I like the new direction WEDC has taken to look at existing businesses and smaller projects.
Milwaukee-based The Marcus Corp. plans to lay off 410 workers at six Wisconsin hotels, plus an additional 15 employees, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to hamstring the restaurant and hospitality industries.
The company will lay off workers at three downtown Milwaukee hotels, two resorts in Lake Geneva and a hotel in Madison, according to a flurry of WARN (Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification) notices that Marcus Corp. filed with the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development... ...more
American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation plans to demolish existing lodge and work with private developer for new opportunities
CABLE, Wis. – The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation is hoping the
Telemark Resort property will become a prime destination again.
The iconic Birkebeiner ski race starts at Telemark every February.
Now, the race foundation wants to buy the resort property, and could
close on it as early as September.
It will cost the Birkie about $2 million to buy the land and demolish
the existing Telemark Lodge which opened in the 1970s, went through
multiple bankruptcies, and closed permanently in 2013.
The American Birkebeiner Ski Foundation and the Town of Cable have
applied for a $500,000 grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development
Corporation to demolish most or all of the lodge so a new development
can be built on the site...
Ken Notes: I would coop the existing property if it is structurally sound for just a few dollars a month to cover maintenance and any renovations needed. Imagine 200 skiing advocates for the entire property. If your are spending 2 million to tear it down what difference does it make to keep it up and generate a little income and a lot of public support.
We continue to price ourselves out of the very market that built much of Wisconsin, middle class tourists form the cities looking for an escape...
MADISON — The state Department of Natural Resources board is set to
vote next week on whether to allow the agency to begin drafting
regulations implementing restrictions on firefighting foam containing
Gov. Tony Evers signed a bill in
February that bans the use of firefighting foam except in emergencies
and testing at facilities with DNR-approved containment and disposal
Ken Notes: Again we need to work with the federal government to create a national standard and remediation plan.
MOUNT PLEASANT — While the Wisconsin, U.S. and world economies are still sifting through the fallout of the widespread economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, a third-party analysis by the Milwaukee-based Wisconsin Policy Forum views the financial condition of the Village of Mount Pleasant with “cautious optimism” given its “calculated risk” with the ongoing and evolving Foxconn development.
Wisconsin Policy Forum President Rob Henken summarized the study’s final report at the Monday meeting of the Mount Pleasant Village Board.... ...more
Ken Notes: I have talked with these communities and they are spending in line with the committed investment. The Pandemic definitely made this far more complicated but I believe the leadership is there to see this through....
Wednesday, July 1, 2020, 7:00am
the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation released a report on how
the state’s industries and workers have been affected by the
coronavirus pandemic — and imagines a new way forward. We talk with
Secretary Missy Hughes, the head of WEDC, about the report.
Ken Notes: Well worth listening to...
Findorff, builders of Wisconsin`s finest projects...and ...A sponsor of Wisconsin Development News
Wisconsin Rapids, Wis. (WAOW) -- The City of Wisconsin Rapids is working with "key partners and organizations" to address the impacts of Verso Ccorporation`s plan to idle operations at their Wisconsin Rapids paper mill.
The City is communicating with mill management, Senator Patrick Testin’s office, Representative Scott Krug’s office, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), the North Central Workforce Development Board
(NCWWDB) and the Heart of Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce. Mayor Shane Blaser and Director of Community Development, Kyle Kearns, are working on the local response effort, which includes coordinating resources and strategizing economic development opportunities... ...more
Ken Notes:Stepping outside the box here, we may want to contact Chinese paper companies who have been purchasing our pulp companies and see if they would be interested in a paper production facility....
Dane County signed a $3 million extension with Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin on Wednesday as the coronavirus pandemic continues to affect area residents.
According to a news release, the resolution signed by County Executive Joe Parisi doubles funding for the county and Second Harvest’s COVID-19 food partnership to $6 million.
“Second Harvest is incredibly grateful for the extension of our contract with Dane County,” said Michelle Orge, President & CEO of Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, in a statement. ... ...more
Secretary-designee for the Wisconsin
Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection said over
10,000 farms have applied to the WI Farm Support program, which opened
up for applications last week.
who made $35,000 to $5 million in gross income based on 2019 tax returns
are eligible to apply for $1,000 to $3,500 in one-time payments, based
on an income-driven sliding scale.
Applications are open until 11:59 pm Monday, June 29. The application can be found by going to the Department of Revenue`s website,
or if you need assistance filling the application, you can
call 608-266-2772. Spanish and Hmong speakers can also call that number
SEE ALSO: ...more
The University of Wisconsin System and the Wisconsin Technical College System are making it easier for students to plan credit transfers in Wisconsin by launching a new online credit transfer tool called Transferology.
Over the last year, the UW System coordinated the launch of Transferology to make transfer easier and more efficient in Wisconsin by replacing its current transfer information system with the new online credit transfer tool. UW System led a team from the UW System campuses and the technical colleges to convert all course data from their databases into Transferology and launch the new online tool. The project also included the College of Menominee Nation and the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College. ...more
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.
The coronavirus has delivered a significant impact on Wisconsin businesses, and for the Foxconn Technology Group, it could delay when the company receives millions of dollars in state tax credits.
According to emails obtained by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Foxconn was supposed to submit a third-party report verifying information related to tax credits by May 15. Deloitte, a London-based auditing and consulting agency, has been tasked by Foxconn to write the report... ...more
Gov. Tony Evers Monday named leaders
from around the state to the Blue Ribbon Commission on Rural Prosperity.
The governor announced the commission during his State of the State
speech in January. The commission will be tasked with developing
long-term strategies on how Wisconsin can best support the needs of
rural Wisconsinites and rural communities. ??“Even before the COVID-19
pandemic hit, Wisconsin’s rural communities were facing challenges to
their very survival,” Gov. Evers said. “It is more important than ever
to listen to the concerns of our rural residents and support them in
Included in that group is Lauren Thompson, a senior-to-be at Baldwin-Woodville High School.
Ken Notes:Can someone mention 5G to this group...
It has been a tremendous honor to work with all of you for the last six years and I am filled with gratitude for all of the friendships I have made and for the important work that has been done. I have accepted a new position in Madison working with entrepreneurs and start-ups, two things I am incredibly passionate about, with some really fantastic people....
Nora Roughen-Schmidt ...more
Ken Notes: She will be missed...
MADISON – Incoming University of Wisconsin System President Governor
Tommy Thompson announced today former Assembly Speaker, Ambassador to
Norway, and UW System Board of Regents member Tom Loftus and former
Department of Administration Secretary Scott Neitzel will co-chair his
transition team... ...more
A roundup of top news and information about Wisconsin’s response to the coronavirus
Today we highlight our latest examination of Wisconsin’s overwhelmed unemployment insurance system, which has left thousands of people without income during the economically devastating pandemic. ...more
Bram Sable-Smith, a WPR fellow embedded in the Wisconsin Watch newsroom, reports on national research showing that jobless Black and Latino workers have historically proved less likely than white workers to receive unemployment aid. Wisconsin’s Department of Workforce Development says it does not have race, gender, age or income reports available.
Some experts say Wisconsin — home to some of the country’s most severe racial disparities in education, public health, housing and criminal justice — should track whether its workforce agency equitably distributes unemployment during the economic crisis...
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...
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!!!
- 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... ...more
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...
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.
Start Week: 24 - Query String:SELECT * FROM wdn WHERE `issue` > 24 and volume = 8 OR `issue` > 90 ORDER BY sortorder