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Scott Walker’s Record on Jobs & the Economy

Scott Walker’s Signature Promise Was to Create 250,000 Jobs in Wisconsin in His First Term. He Fell Nearly 50% Short of That Goal


Running for office in 2010, Scott Walker’s signature promise was to create 250,000 jobs in Wisconsin in his first term. He fell nearly 50% short of that goal, an abysmal failure at the one major promise he made to voters. Additionally, Wisconsin’s economy has lagged behind the rest of the Midwest during the economic recovery, with Wisconsin consistently ranking dead last or near last in key economic and job growth during Walker’s tenure.

To make matters worse, Walker’s flagship economic development agency, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) has been mired by incompetence, cronyism, and corruption. Multiple audits show the agency has broken the law, failed to follow internal policies, and lost track of millions in taxpayer dollars. And recent investigations by media outlets have shown state economic development awards going to Walker campaign donors. A One Wisconsin Now analysis in May of 2014 showed nearly 60% of economic development awards flowed to businesses with a connection to Walker’s donors, either through employees or their management structure.

When it comes to jobs and economic development, Walker’s agenda has been a nearly complete failure.

Stunning Special Election in Wisconsin Shows Scott Walker’s Foxconn Deal Isn’t the Political Winner It...

The Foxconn plant wasn’t a major issue in her race against Republican Adam Jarchow — in large part because neither candidate supported it, albeit for very different reasons. Mike Brown, deputy director of One Wisconsin Now, a major progressive non-profit in the state, says the deal has “absolutely” become a liability for Walker electorally. Politicians in the 20 cities Amazon has deemed potentially worthy of its future headquarters may want to pay close attention to Walker’s peril. [the Intercept, 01/19/2018]

Before Ink Dry on Contract, Scott Walker Running from Foxconn Deal

Gov. Scott Walker couldn’t say “Foxconn” enough throughout the summer months, touting his efforts to deliver the largest state subsidy to a foreign corporation in history. But now, as polls consistently find strong public opposition to the deal and a contract is signed putting state taxpayers on the hook for up to $4 billion, Walker doesn't even mention Foxconn in his stump speech as he jets around the state announcing he is running for election in 2018.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/08/2017]

WEDC Fails to Meet Standards of Accountability on Foxconn Deal

As the state legislature’s Joint Audit Committee reviews another critical review of the performance of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), a contract between the agency and Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn to implement the details of the largest state subsidy to a foreign corporation remain hidden from the public. According to the audit, the agency created by Gov. Scott Walker in 2011 continues to fail to adequately track jobs created or retained and has a dramatically increasing amount of potentially uncollectible loans. Meanwhile, despite a request from a WEDC board member, the agency appears set to continue to hide the details of the contract with Foxconn until after it is signed.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/24/2017]

Amazon in the market for HQ2, angles for subsidies

“We are all for communities in Wisconsin aggressively courting new employers and new jobs, especially because of Scott Walker’s failure to create the 250,000 jobs he promised in his 2009 campaign,” said Scot Ross of the statewide progressive group One Wisconsin Now. He also said, “We saw from the Foxconn debacle Scott Walker is a terrible negotiator. So if taxpayers are going to get the best deal, it better be left in the hands of local elected officials in Milwaukee and Madison. The best deal for taxpayers is always investing in people.” [Wisconsin Gazette, 10/10/2017]

Walker On Foxconn Bill Signing: Today Is One Of Those Days We Savor

Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director, called the bill a subsidy and took issue that the incentives are going to a foreign corporation. “By signing the Foxconn deal into law today Scott Walker, and the legislators that put the bill on his desk, are responsible for committing us to send billions to a foreign corporation instead of investing it here — in Wisconsin public schools and universities, in Wisconsin roads and bridges, and in Wisconsin businesses and entrepreneurs,” Ross said. [Racine County Eye, 09/18/2017]

Scott Walker to Sign Away $3 Billion to Subsidize Foreign Manufacturer

Today, Gov. Scott Walker is set to sign into law the largest state subsidy given to a foreign corporation in history. Under the terms of an agreement literally written out in longhand on a piece of stationery, taxpayers of the state of Wisconsin will be on the hook for billions of dollars, payable to Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn, with no guarantees their money will only be used to support Wisconsin jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/18/2017]

Scott Walker’s Favorite Right-Wing Foundations Funding His Favorite Professor

A report in the Capital Times this week reveals that Scott Walker’s favorite University of Wisconsin professor, Noah Williams, has received grants worth $340,000 from right-wing mega funders Koch and Bradley Foundations this year. Williams, who also sought work as an advisor on Walker’s 71 day long run for President, has produced “studies” touting a Walker supported tax loophole and his proposed deal to give Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn a $3 billion state subsidy.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/01/2017]

Foxconn Creates A Job … for Top Scott Walker Campaign Consultant

Any doubt campaign politics is the driving force behind Gov. Scott Walker gambling $3 billion on a subsidy for Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn has been dispelled by the creation of a single job. According to a report from Wispolitics.com, the lobbying firm hired by Foxconn has brought on Keith Gilkes, Walker’s longtime campaign manager and the head of the Unintimidated PAC that supported his presidential ambitions, to do “public affairs and communications.”

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/29/2017]

Foxconn Deal Flounders in State Legislature

Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed deal with Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn is floundering in the legislature as the State Assembly delays committee action following a devastating analysis from the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau. Meanwhile, in the State Senate, the leader of the Republican majority suggested he may lack the votes to pass it and revealed he and his colleagues have been excluded from discussions on amendments.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/10/2017]

If ‘Ifs’ and ‘Buts’ Are Candies and Nuts We’ll Have Foxconn Deal Paid Off in 2043

The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau’s analysis of a $3 billion state taxpayer-funded deal proposed by Gov. Scott Walker to lure an electronics factory operated by Taiwanese-based manufacturer Foxconn to Wisconsin would, at best, be a net loser of revenue for nearly three decades. Variables including the percentage of jobs that go to Illinois and other state residents and changing business conditions could delay Wisconsin taxpayers from recouping the billions they are being asked to pay in subsidies for much longer, according to the analysis.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/09/2017]

What Does the Foxconn CEO Say About His Employees?

Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn, who Gov. Scott Walker would like to send up to $3 billion of our tax dollars, has a troubling record when it comes to employee working conditions. According to a story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the views Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has expressed about his workforce — referring to them as “animals” and seeking management advice from a zoo director — may provide some explanation.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/04/2017]

Foxconn CEO compared workers to animals, had zoo director give management tips

Mike Browne, deputy director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now, said Gou's 2012 comments show lawmakers should be wary of the incentive package Walker is promoting. "The Foxconn CEO’s animosity to workers and his corporation’s documented poor treatment of them is yet another red flag," Browne said in a statement. "Before we spend one dime of our tax dollars to subsidize Foxconn’s operations, there need to be ironclad worker protections written into law." [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 08/03/2017]

No Guarantees Wisconsin Taxes Won't Subsidize Illinois Jobs in Foxconn Deal

A proposed deal to lure a factory owned by Taiwanese electronic manufacturer Foxconn to Wisconsin could commit state taxpayers to shelling out $3 billion to the company on the promise of job creation. Supporters of the deal are touting “safeguards” to protect the state from subsidizing Foxconn unless promised jobs appear. But, according to One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne, missing from the legislation is any guarantee that the jobs associated with the construction or ongoing operation of the factory will go to Wisconsin residents.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/02/2017]

Scott Walker Already Running Campaign Ads on Foxconn Proposal

According to media reports, Gov. Scott Walker has launched political campaign ads to tout his proposal to send $3 billion in state tax dollars to Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn to bring a factory to Wisconsin. One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne said the ads around the deal suggest re-election politics were at the front of Gov. Walker’s mind as he negotiated in secret with Foxconn.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/01/2017]

Walker: Foxconn deal ‘super big’

In a column sent ahead of Walker’s visit, liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now executive director Scot Ross bemoaned the company’s failure to follow through on promises made to other states. He cited a plan to add hundreds of jobs by way of a plant in Pennsylvania that was promised in 2013 and has yet to be built. A follow-up news release from the organization chastises the $3 billion in tax breaks to the company as part of an incentive package for coming to Wisconsin. “Gov. Walker campaigning around the state isn’t going to change the fact that doling out $250 million a year to a multibillion dollar foreign corporation to get $180 million in state and local taxes is, on its face, a bad deal for us,” the release stated. [Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, 07/28/2017]

Wisconsin Governor Dismisses Criticisms of Foxconn Deal

Scot Ross, executive director of the progressive advocacy group One Wisconsin Now, noted the WEDC is reporting the project will only generate $181 million annually in state and local tax revenue, but the subsidy program has an annual cost of up to $250 million over 15 years. “Talk about the ‘art of the deal,’” Ross said in a statement. “The prospect this secret deal is the best thing for Wisconsin taxpayers is, to say the least, slim. [Bloomberg, 07/27/2017]

Walker Administration Admits No Records for Tax Break Jobs Claim

 In recent testimony before the state legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance, Gov. Scott Walker’s Department of Revenue (DOR) Secretary Rick Chandler declared that a runaway manufacturing and ag tax giveaway to the wealthy and corporations enacted in the 2011 state budget is helping create jobs. But in response to an open records request by One Wisconsin Now seeking documentation to back up Chandler’s job creation claim the agency replied: “We do not have any such records.”

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/19/2017]

Will Corporate CEO Put Profits Before Workers, Again?

The Wisconsin job outsourcing business that hosted Gov. Scott Walker when he signed a wrong for Wisconsin right to work law is now suggesting it may be up for sale to, “enhance shareholder value”. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross termed “pathological” the quest for corporate profits at the expense of workers.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/05/2016]

Privatization Fail: Scott Walker’s WEDC in Full Meltdown

In May 2014, One Wisconsin Now ran the numbers on WEDC loans and found that nearly 60 percent of some $975 million in assistance distributed by WEDC since 2011 went to firms that had contributed to Walker or the Republican Governor’s Association. "This new audit confirms that WEDC is the embodiment of the cronyism, corruption and incompetence of the Walker administration,” One Wisconsin Now’s Scot Ross told CMD. [Center for Media and Democracy, 04/21/2016]

WMC Discouraged WEDC From Trying to Keep Major Corporation in Wis.

A media report breaking late this afternoon revealed the state big business lobby, the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, told Gov. Scott Walker’s Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) not to reach out to Kraft Heinz in June of 2015. The directive came months before the parent company of Oscar Mayer announced it would shutter its Madison plant and move the corporate headquarters out of Wisconsin, directly costing the state roughly 1,000 jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 03/02/2016]

Walker administration won’t explain what happened to WEDC text messages

On Oct. 29, in response to a separate request for records by liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now, DOA lawyer Elisabeth Winterhack also cited the new “transitory” records retention policy in explaining why police logs of anticipated visitors to the Governor’s Mansion weren’t maintained. Jenni Dye, research director for One Wisconsin Now, said she doesn’t believe the police logs meet the definition of “transitory” records. [Capital Times, 01/16/2016]

Walker Sends Campaign Debt Email in Midst of 1,300 Job Loss in WI

Gov. Scott Walker and his administration failed to make so much as a phone call in advance of Kraft-Heinz announcement the company is shuttering the Madison-based Oscar Mayer operation, leaving 1,000 Wisconsin workers out of jobs. Yet after doing nothing, Walker was able late this week to hit send on a fundraising solicitation to try to pay off the estimated $1 million debt his bloated presidential campaign racked up in a mere 71 days.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/06/2015]

Scott Walker asks supporters for help in paying off campaign debt

The liberal group One Wisconsin Now slammed Walker for doing fundraising rather than focusing on economic problems in the state, such as the announcement this week that the Oscar Mayer plant in Madison would be shuttering, resulting in the loss of 1,000 jobs. "Wisconsin families are being thrown into chaos and losing their jobs because Scott Walker was more focused on chasing his own presidential ambitions than doing his job as governor," One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross said. "And now, instead of taking even one iota of responsibility for his failure, he's shaking down donors to pay off the debt he rang up on the campaign trail paying bloated salaries to political operatives and even his own family." [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 11/06/2015]

Scott Walker looking for $1,000 donations to pay back presidential campaign debt

"Wisconsin families are being thrown into chaos and losing their jobs because Scott Walker was more focused on chasing his own presidential ambitions than doing his job as governor," said One Wisconsin Now executive director Scot Ross in a statement. "And now, instead of taking even one iota of responsibility for his failure, he’s shaking down donors to pay off the debt he rang up on the campaign trail paying bloated salaries to political operatives and even his own family." [Capital Times, 11/06/2015]

Scott Walker says he’ll be a stay-at-home governor

Scot Ross, executive director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now, wasn't convinced. He said he believed some of the problems with soured financial awards at the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. were tied to the fact that its employees had lost job protections when it was created as a quasi-public replacement for the state Department of Commerce. "State employees lost civil service protections when WEDC was created, and it has been plagued with unprecedented cronyism, corruption and incompetence ever since," Ross said. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 09/25/2015]

Rearranging Deck Chairs Won't Save Walker's WEDC

The centerpiece of Gov. Scott Walker’s economic agenda, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), has been a prime example of his administration’s cronyism, corruption and incompetence throughout its four plus years of existence. Now it is looking for yet another new head after the current CEO announced this week he will be resigning next month. According to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, WEDC needs more than Walker and the WEDC Board Chair, who also heads the board of the big business lobby the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, tapping a new crony to oversee the operation.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/27/2015]

In light of Scott Walker’s China comments, aides defend Wisconsin’s trade relationship

Scot Ross, executive director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now, thinks Walker has another motive for being tough on China, calling the move a "ham-handed dodge." "Scott Walker desperately wanted to change the media focus on his three positions in a week as he tries to chase Donald Trump's race to the sewer, proving again Scott Walker will say and do anything to win a political campaign," Ross said, referring to Walker's apparent shift among three different positions on birthright citizenship in a matter of a week. [La Crosse Tribune, 08/26/2015]

Scott Walker, Crony Capitalist

This is hardly the first time that one of Walker’s financial supporters has benefited from taxpayer largess. A July report by One Wisconsin Now, a liberal activist group that has been consistently critical of Walker, found that since 2009 the governor’s campaign organization, Friends of Scott Walker, had received more than $2.1 million from individuals linked to WEDC awards. According to the report, the majority of the money doled out by the WEDC since its inception has gone to Walker donors—including, once again, Hammes, whose $100 million hotel project received a $55.9 million taxpayer backed loan approved by the agency. [Politico, 08/25/2015]

Scott Walker Is Two-Faced on China

Scot Ross, who heads the progressive group One Wisconsin Now, criticized the governor for the apparent incongruency. “Scott Walker doesn’t understand what’s going on in the world and doesn’t know what’s going on in his state,” he said. “In his desperate attempt to out-Trump Trump, Scott Walker has out-Palined Palin.” “It’s pretty rich for a guy who’s had three positions on immigration in a week to be telling the President to get a backbone,” he added. [Daily Beast, 08/24/2015]

Lawmakers Continue to Tinker with Walker’s Job Creation Agency

“There is a lot of money being spent through this agency to try to create a lot of jobs in Wisconsin, and it has been a complete and utter failure,” says Mike Browne, of the liberal watchdog One Wisconsin Now. It recently published a report blasting WEDC. Yet Browne says there are things the agency can do to improve performance. [WUWM-FM, 08/17/2015]

ICYMI: Report Details Continuing Failures of WEDC

Updated research by One Wisconsin Institute analyzes four years of failure by the quasi-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), created by Gov. Scott Walker and supported by state legislative Republicans. The report details ties between WEDC award recipients and Walker campaign donors, as well as businesses whose owners, directors or employees contributed to the campaign of Scott Walker receiving over sixty percent of dollars awarded by the jobs agency.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/12/2015]

WEDC Record in Wis. Has Been a Scandal-Wracked Failure

Much of the cash flowed to Walker’s political allies. According to a new report by the left-leaning One Wisconsin Institute, 60 percent of the $1.14 billion given out by the WEDC went to firms connected to Walker’s campaign contributors—that includes more than $2.1 million those donors have given Walker’s election campaigns directly. [In These Times, 07/31/2015]

Wisconsin’s Economic Cautionary Tale

According to a new report by the left-leaning One Wisconsin Institute, 60 percent of the $1.14 billion given out by the WEDC went to firms connected to Walker’s campaign contributors — that includes more than $2.1 million those donors have given Walker’s election campaigns directly. [San Francisco Chronicle, 07/31/2015]

New Research: WEDC is Four Years of Failure

A report released today by One Wisconsin Institute analyzes four years of failure by the quasi-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), created by Gov. Scott Walker. The report details ties between WEDC award recipients and Walker campaign donors, as well as businesses whose owners, directors or employees contributed to the campaign of Scott Walker receiving over sixty percent of dollars awarded by the jobs agency.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/30/2015]

Two companies fail after getting $1.4 million from Gov. Scott Walker’s jobs agency

Despite signs of trouble within the companies, Gov. Scott Walker’s jobs agency loaned about $1.4 million in taxpayer money to two northern Wisconsin firms that have failed to fully repay the loans or create hundreds of promised jobs. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. sued the companies — Tomahawk Metal Products of Tomahawk and North American Finishing of Suring — along with four others for failure to repay state taxpayer-funded loans or comply with grant terms. [Wisconsin State Journal, 07/26/2015]

Scott Walker’s Jobs Program Didn’t Work

“The bottom line is that Scott Walker said when he came into office, this is my blueprint for making good on my promise to create 250,000 jobs,” said Scot Ross, who helms the progressive group One Wisconsin Now. “And there were a lot of voices out there at the time—mostly on the Democratic or liberal side—saying, this is going to be transparent, and it’s just going to be a slush fund for Walker’s donors. Not only has been that, but it hasn’t created jobs either.” [Daily Beast, 06/25/2015]

Gov. Scott Walker taking heat from both right and left over WEDC

Meanwhile, one of the governor’s loudest critics on the left, Scot Ross of One Wisconsin Now, is saying there will be no improvement at WEDC unless politics can be taken out of the equation. “It’s time for Gov. Walker to come home and come clean about what’s been going on at WEDC,” Ross said in a statement. “And it’s time for the Republican majority in the state Legislature to stop covering for him as he runs for president and start demanding answers and accountability.” [Capital Times, 05/22/2015]

Walker promise to create 250,000 jobs falls short

Gov Scott Walker made it only about halfway toward fulfilling his signature 2010 campaign promise — repeated in the 2012 recall — that 250,000 private-sector jobs would be created over four years under his leadership New figures released by the Republican's office on Thursday show about 35,700 private-sector jobs were created in Wisconsin in 2014 But taken together with the previous three years, only about 129,000 private-sector jobs were added during Walker's term, or just over halfway to what was promised

[Associated Press, 05/22/2015]

Transparency Walker's WEDC Don't Go Together

Gov. Walker is in the hot seat over revelations that his top aides successfully lobbied for a risky state loan to the business of a major Walker campaign donor through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), chaired by Walker. One Wisconsin Now’s open records request filed a year ago, seeking correspondence between Walker and his staff and WEDC about businesses whose owners and employees made campaign contributions and received state help, might have brought other instances to light but Gov. Walker’s office refused to fulfill the request.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/19/2015]

Watchdog groups have long warned against WEDC practices

Last year, a report from the liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now cited figures showing that nearly 60 percent of some $975 million in assistance distributed by WEDC went to firms that had contributed to Walker or the Republican Governor’s Association. That report reviewed public campaign finance records and found that 192 donors were associated with companies that got WEDC awards. The report says Walker received more than $1 million in direct campaign funds and another $1 million via the RGA from WEDC aid recipients. [La Crosse Tribune, 05/19/2015]

Walker aides pushed for questionable WEDC loan for donor who had maxed out to Walker

Gov. Scott Walker’s top aides and a powerful lobbyist pressed for a taxpayer-funded loan in 2011 to a financially struggling Milwaukee construction company that lost the state half a million dollars, created no jobs and raised questions about where the money went, a State Journal investigation has found...The push to fund the BCI project came after Minahan gave Walker’s 2010 Republican campaign for governor a last-minute infusion of $10,000 on Election Day — the maximum individual contribution. Jadin said Minahan and Huebsch -- a nonvoting member of the WEDC board by virtue of his role as Administration secretary -- pushed for a $4.3 million WEDC loan, but the agency could justify no more than a $500,000 loan, which Jadin said he considered “fairly risky.”

[Wisconsin State Journal, 05/18/2015]

Walker calls off his planned merger of WEDC with WHEDA after “damning audit” of WEDC

Gov. Scott Walker has cancelled a planned merger of two economic development agencies after a new audit said Walker's job-creating entity failed to follow statutes or its own policies when making financial awards...Within hours of the audit release, Walker issued a statement calling for that merger to be removed from the state budget along with a merger of two other state agencies. "After hearing concerns from legislators, stakeholders, and the WHEDA and WEDC boards, we asked legislators to remove the proposed agency mergers from the state budget and we asked the bill authors to not move forward with the proposed separate legislation," Walker said.

[Capital Times, 05/08/2015]

Walker's WEDC Under Microscope

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has come under scrutiny by media nationally and in Iowa recently for a $62 million-plus award of state funds to the retail outlet Kohl's doled out under his watch as chair of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross noted that more transactions by Walker’s WEDC deserve scrutiny, including over $86 million in state economic assistance to businesses that outsourced jobs to foreign countries.

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/24/2015]

Scott Walker opponents question his WEDC role after Menard report

"WEDC is the perfect microcosm for the way in which Gov. Walker operates. He has all of the power, he gets everything he wants, and he blames the failure, the utter abject failure, on everything else," said One Wisconsin Now executive director Scot Ross. "It’s so bad that after almost four years, every time WEDC comes out of his mouth, you know an excuse is on its way." [Capital Times, 03/28/2015]

WEDC Funds Have Gone to Businesses of Walker's Political Boosters

The synergy between Gov. Scott Walker’s Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) and his political fortunes is making headlines again. This time it’s a secret $1.5 million donation to a Walker aligned group from Wisconsin’s richest man before his business snagged $1.8 million in tax credits courtesy of the Walker administration’s WEDC. But One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross pointed to their earlier report, “W is for WEDC,” that found a disproportionate share of WEDC funds went to businesses whose owners and employees made donations to help advance the political aspirations of Gov. Walker as evidence of a pattern of behavior.

[One Wisconsin Now, 03/25/2015]

John Menard Jr. donated $1.5 million to pro-Walker groups, received money from Walker’s WEDC

He wrote more than $1.5 million in checks to a pro-Walker political advocacy group that pledged to keep its donors secret, three sources directly familiar with the transactions told Yahoo News. Menard’s previously unreported six-figure contributions to the Wisconsin Club for Growth — a group that spent heavily to defend Walker during a bitter 2012 recall election — seem to have paid off for the businessman and his company. In the past two years, Menard’s company has been awarded up to $1.8 million in special tax credits from a state economic development corporation that Walker chairs, according to state records.

[Yahoo News, 03/23/2015]

Reaction to Walker’s State of State speech

“We see Wisconsin as a state in need of improvement,” said Scot Ross, director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now. “Our schools and workforce are among the best in the nation. But the facts show Scott Walker has failed to deliver, leaving us with lagging job growth and stagnant wages.” [Associated Press, 01/15/2015]

Gov. Walker's Math Problem Much Bigger Than Spelling Woes

Late yesterday, Gov. Scott Walker dismissed as a spelling error, a gaffe discovered by One Wisconsin Now that went viral following a story in The Capital Times in which he wished a constituent “molotov” instead of “mazel tov.” One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross noted math is a much bigger challenge for Walker as Wisconsin faces a budget deficit of over $2 billion, a pledge to create 250,000 jobs in his first term remains woefully unfulfilled and 1 million state student loan borrowers continue to wait for relief.

[One Wisconsin Now, 12/11/2014]

Is Scott Walker Already Breaking Another Campaign Promise?

Leading up to the November 4 election, Gov. Scott Walker stated if re-elected he was not interested in pursuing legislation to further restrict the rights of Wisconsin workers. Yet less than one month after he survived a heated re-election bid, a new group with ties to a right-wing, big money cabal that underwrites conservative causes and has supported Gov. Walker, announced it will work to pass legislation to further restrict workplace rights in Wisconsin.

[One Wisconsin Now, 12/01/2014]

Mentions of "Washington" Equal "Wisconsin" in Walker Election Night Speech

 In his election night speech after narrowly being re-elected Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker mentioned “Washington” as much as “Wisconsin”. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross noted Walker's eleven-minute speech in which he mentioned Wisconsin ten times, Washington nine times and America twelve times was a stunning display that Wisconsin's Governor has already moved on to his next electoral objective.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/05/2014]

Gov. Walker's Student Loan Horror Show Premieres

 One Wisconsin Now is using Halloween to debut a new graphic depiction of the horrors of Gov. Scott Walker’s opposition to common sense student loan reforms for hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites. At TheWalkerDead.com, viewers can see numerous nightmare scenarios befalling the student loan borrowers struggling against Scott Walker’s indifference to their economic futures.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/31/2014]

#TBT 2006-2010: The Stunning Hypocrisy of Scott Walker

 While Scott Walker gubernatorial candidate was calling for “transparency in the state contracting process,” Scott Walker Milwaukee County Executive and top aides were secretly funneling confidential information to a political crony to try to help him win a lucrative deal with the county. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross blasted Walker’s actions as a “stunning display of hypocrisy, even for Scott Walker.” Ross also renewed his call for the resignations of other scheme participants Cindy Archer and Jim Villa from their six-figure salary state jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/23/2014]

Central Figures in Attempted Milwaukee Co. Bid Scheme Should Resign

 Central figures in providing inside information and attempting to help Gov. Scott Walker’s longtime campaign treasurer win a lucrative contract with Milwaukee County while Walker was County Executive today hold state jobs with six figure salaries. That needs to change, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross who today called for the resignations of Cindy Archer and Jim Villa.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/22/2014]

Walker Ad Can't Hide Failing Record on Higher Ed, Student Loan Debt

 In a deceptive new ad, the flailing campaign of Gov. Scott Walker is trying to whitewash his disastrous record on student loan debt and higher education. Speaking directly to camera, Walker ignores the fact students are paying $200 million in higher tuition as result of hikes he signed into law. Also unmentioned by Walker is that he’s stood in the way of a first in the nation state plan plan that would allow many of Wisconsin’s more than 800,000 student loan borrowers to refinance their loans, just like you can a mortgage.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/20/2014]

Walker's 'Work Problem' is His Problem

 Gov. Scott Walker’s excuse during Friday's debate that Wisconsin doesn’t have a jobs problem, it has a “work problem,” is the latest and most offensive excuse by the flailing governor who promised 250,000 jobs, while putting Wisconsin dead last in the Midwest in job creation under his watch.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/13/2014]

Burke Calls Student Loan Reform Her Top Priority

 Democratic candidate for governor Mary Burke told the Associated Press her “first priority” as governor would be passing the Higher Ed, Lower Debt bill to lower student debt. Burke’s plan would allow many of Wisconsin’s 800,000-plus student loan borrowers to refinance their loans at lower market rates, like one can with a mortgage, as well as a substantial middle class tax break for payments on student loans.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/06/2014]

Gov. Walker Has It Completely Backwards

 After signing into law drastic funding cuts to an Alcohol and Other Drug Addiction (AODA) program targeting youths, Gov. Scott Walker is now proposing mandatory drug testing for Wisconsinites as a condition of receiving unemployment benefits or participating in the FoodShare program. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross denounced the shortsighted and hypocritical actions of Gov. Walker on the issue.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/01/2014]

Walker Refuses to Help Student Borrowers, WEDC Lets Businesses off Hook

 Gov. Scott Walker has steadfastly refused to support a common sense state plan to allow students loan refinancing, just like you can a mortgage, helping many of Wisconsin's 800,000 student loan borrowers. Meanwhile, a recent audit of Gov. Walker’s Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) revealed the agency declared as uncollectible millions of dollars in taxpayer funded loans to businesses that were delinquent.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/26/2014]

State Job Website Falls Tens of Thousands of Jobs Short of Claimed Listings

 Gov. Scott Walker and his Department of Workforce Development publicly tout over 70,000 job openings as being posted on a state website, jobcenterofwisconsin.com. But according to a Channel 27 News report on One Wisconsin Now’s review of the site, the reality is that Gov. Walker has once again come up far short on a jobs number – over 20,000 fewer jobs in fact, and the site even lists roughly 13,000 openings for jobs outside of the state of Wisconsin.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/24/2014]

Pricetag of Student Loan Debt Continues to Rise

 A recent study from a home building industry consulting firm estimates student loan debt is costing the U.S. housing market $83 billion annually in lost home sales. One Wisconsin Institute Executive Director Scot Ross noted that the most recent data tracks with an earlier study from his organization that found student loan borrowers and their families were significantly more likely to rent versus own their home.

[One Wisconsin Institute, 09/24/2014]

Walker: Where Have We Heard That Before?

In his first term in office Gov. Scott Walker signed at least nineteen bills or budget provisions into law that were drawn from corporate bill factory the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). He, along with the GOP legislature, also allowed a mining company that donated $700,000 to write large portions of a bill weakening the state’s laws on mining. Now running for re-election Gov. Walker continues “borrowing” from others, using the same campaign catch phrase as 21 other GOP governors and lifting a controversial portion of his jobs plan from a failed experiment in Florida.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/22/2014]

Gov. Walker Earns Failing Grades in Student Loan Debt 101 on College Tour

Nearly one million Wisconsinites have student loan debt, part of the $1.2 trillion student loan debt crisis that ensnares 40 million Americans. But according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, a recent college campus tour undertaken by the increasingly desperate campaign of Gov. Scott Walker earns failing grades for failing to take on the $1.2 trillion student loan debt crisis.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/10/2014]

Workers Rally for Higher Wages, Better Workplace Conditions

Fast food workers across the country, including in Milwaukee, Madison and Wausau, today engaged in direct actions and rallies for higher wages and the right to bargain for better working conditions. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross applauded the workers effort and noted that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s opposition to a higher minimum wage and actions like stripping workers of their rights have left the state lagging the Midwest on jobs and wage growth.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/04/2014]

Gov. Walker Needs to Go Back to School on Education Policy

 As students across Wisconsin head back to school, it’s Gov. Scott Walker who needs to be educated about the impact of his wrong-headed education policies, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross. Under Walker and his education policies, Wisconsin has had lagging job growth and rates of wage increases that trail neighboring states, earning him a failing grade.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/29/2014]

The Latest 'Wisconsin Comeback' Under Gov. Walker: Budget Deficits

 In a recent TV ad the increasingly desperate campaign of Gov. Walker claims to have eliminated budget deficits. But the release of new tax collection figures could put the current budget crafted by Gov. Walker and the GOP-controlled legislature hundreds of millions of dollars out of balance and balloon a projected shortfall in the next budget to well over $1 billion.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/28/2014]

Inequality Making a 'Wisconsin Comeback' With Gov. Walker Policies

 Gov. Scott Walker, who plunged the state to last in the Midwest in jobs on his watch, is touting a “Wisconsin comeback” in his stump speeches and TV ads. As Wisconsin celebrates Women’s Equality Day and the 94th anniversary of passage of the 19th amendment grating women the right to vote, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross noted the unwelcome “comeback” under Walker of regressive policies that hurt women and their families.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/26/2014]

PBS NewsHour Features One Wisconsin's Student Loan Debt Work

 The national ‘PBS NewsHour’ program, as part of its weeklong series “Rethinking College” will feature One Wisconsin Now’s work on the student loan debt crisis in a segment airing Tuesday evening. The piece, entitled “Wisconsin group wants to turn student loan borrowers into activists,” also features U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, U.S. Army Veteran and current UW-Waukesha student Saul Newton and recent UW-Madison graduate Ann DeGarmo.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/25/2014]

Walker Can't Dispute Facts of One Wisconsin Now WEDC Report

The increasingly desperate campaign of Gov. Scott Walker hastily convened a press conference yesterday to dispute the undeniable facts that his policies and administration have been an utter failure on job creation. As Walker’s campaign spin machine shifts into high gear, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross noted that the facts remain a majority of state economic development funds doled out by the Wisconsin Economic Development went corporations whose owners and employees contributed $1.2 million to Gov. Walker and the most comprehensive survey on job creation shows Wisconsin trails neighboring states and the national average.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/22/2014]

Gov. Walker Hiding Details of Latest Ad

The latest television ad from the floundering campaign of Gov. Scott Walker purports to feature “real people” who allegedly got their jobs via the trickle-down economic policies of the Walker administration. The ad provides no identifying information about these individuals, and the Walker campaign has refused to provide additional information in response to media inquiries. According to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, Walker’s broken promise on jobs and his campaign’s track record of using paid actors and outsourced clip art in ads makes questions of about the veracity of the latest ad well founded.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/13/2014]

Walker Took Another $167,000 from Businesses That Got WEDC Funds

A review of Gov. Scott Walker’s most recent campaign finance report reveals he continues to reap a windfall of campaign donations, nearly $167,000 in just the last six months, from individuals associated with state businesses getting tax breaks, loans and grants through his Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). The latest information comes on the heels of a report from One Wisconsin Now that found Gov. Walker’s WEDC doled out 60 percent of its economic development funds to businesses donating $1 million to Walker’s campaign.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/28/2014]

Walker Conducts Photo-Op at For-Profit College Chain Under Investigation

 Gov. Scott Walker, who has opposed efforts to allow Wisconsin’s more than 900,000 student loan borrowers the chance to refinance their loans at a lower rate, is instead conducting a photo opportunity today at a predatory for-profit college chain under investigation by multiple attorneys general, as well as the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) for deceptive and abusive practices against students.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/28/2014]

Kleefisch Tech College Tour Ignores Walker Failures on Student Loan Debt

As Gov. Scott Walker and Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch continue a statewide election-year tour of Wisconsin's technical colleges, neither has explained why they have increased student loan debt hundreds of millions of dollars, gutted tech college funding by $70 million and opposed common sense reforms that would allow many of the state's nearly 1 million student loan borrowers to refinance their loans, just like you can a mortgage.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/22/2014]

Walker Launches Political Attack on Wisconsin-Based Business

 In his latest negative television ad, Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign attacks Trek Bicycles - an international company, headquartered in Wisconsin and employing 1,000 state residents. According to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, this is just the latest example of the Governor putting his political self-interest before progress on Wisconsin jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/18/2014]

Gov. Walker’s WEDC Doubles Down on Sending State Tax Dollars

Gov. Scott Walker’s Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) responded to news reports revealing how they sent millions in tax credits to businesses that cut Wisconsin jobs and shipped work overseas not by apologizing, but by declaring they’ll do it again. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross said Walker’s WEDC giving state tax dollars to job outsourcers helps to explain how Wisconsin is last in the Midwest and lagging the nation in jobs, and ripped them for declaring they’ll continue to do it instead of fighting to recover state funds.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/10/2014]

Walker Television Attack Ignores Corruption, Cronyism, Incompetence of WEDC

Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign today announced a new negative television blitz against former Wisconsin Commerce Secretary and business leader Mary Burke. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross ripped career politician Scott Walker for attempting to “swift boat” his opponent while refusing to answer questions raised by a One Wisconsin Now report showing not only is his privatized Commerce Department (WEDC) failing to deliver promised jobs, but that 60 percent of taxpayer-financed aid – a staggering $570 million – went to donors to Walker’s campaign.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/08/2014]

Nearly 60% of WEDC funds have gone to Walker, GOP donors

A liberal advocacy group reports that nearly 60 percent of the financial assistance money awarded by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) has gone to businesses whose owners or employees have donated money to the campaign of Gov. Scott Walker (R-Wisconsin) or the Republican Governors Association (RGA). WEDC officials do not dispute that statistic, but insist "contributions absolutely play no role in determining which companies receive awards from WEDC." One Wisconsin Now found that 192 donors associated with businesses receiving WEDC grants donated a total of just over $1 million directly to Gov. Walker's campaign and another $1.1 million to the RGA. The RGA is a special interest group that spent $13 million to help get Gov. Walker elected in 2010 and then defeat the recall effort in 2012.

[WKOW-TV, 06/14/2014]

Wisconsin needs to make small business a priority

As a report by One Wisconsin Now detailed last month, 60 percent of WEDC economic development funds went to only 30 percent of businesses receiving assistance. That's $570 million out of a total $975 million in awards going to some of the largest corporations in the state. Compare that to the relatively minuscule $25 million Governor Walker has devoted to his investment capital fund for small business, and the state's misplaced focus becomes clear. [Julie Lassa, 06/11/2014]

Who is the WEDC Working For?

 A report released today by One Wisconsin Now analyzing state funds distributed by the quasi-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), created by Gov. Scott Walker, raises serious questions about who is really benefitting. The report found that owners or employees of 30 percent of businesses receiving WEDC assistance contributed to Gov. Walker's campaign or the Republican Governors Association (RGA). Meanwhile these same businesses received almost 60 percent of WEDC economic development funds - $570 million in total.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/30/2014]

One Wisconsin Now says WEDC money going to Scott Walker donors like Edgewater developers

A liberal advocacy group is leveling heavy criticism at the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, claiming the quasi-private agency championed by Gov. Scott Walker is delivering financial assistance to campaign donors. The report from One Wisconsin Now maintains that nearly 60 percent of some $975 million in assistance distributed by WEDC went to firms that had contributed to Walker or the Republican Governor’s Association. [Capital Times, 05/30/2014]

Special Interests Drop Big Bucks on TV to Prop Up Scott Walker Again

 With a statewide public opinion poll released last week showing Gov. Walker tied with his Democratic opponent in the lead up to the November elections, Walker’s right-wing allies are again taking to the airwaves to boost his sagging electoral fortunes. Media reports quote a spokesperson for the notorious right-wing Koch brothers subsidized Americans for Prosperity Foundation (AFPF), a tax deductible non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, saying the group will spend at least $866,000 on media, including television and radio ads in the coming weeks.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/27/2014]

One Wisconsin Now takes on Gov. Scott Walker’s failed WEDC

A report released today by One Wisconsin Now analyzing state funds distributed by the quasi-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), created by Gov. Scott Walker, raises serious questions about who is really benefitting. The report found that owners or employees of 30 percent of businesses receiving WEDC assistance contributed to Gov. Walker's campaign or the Republican Governors Association (RGA). Meanwhile these same businesses received almost 60 percent of WEDC economic development funds - $570 million in total. [WLUK-TV, 05/15/2014]

WMC Finds Corporate Elites Overwhelmingly Approve of Walker Pandering

Asking corporate special interests, “how can we love you more?” in closed-door meetings may be paying off with adulation from corporate CEOs for Gov. Walker’s Administration, but for the rest of us the state economy continues to lag the nation and region in economic growth. A recent survey of an elite slice of big business CEOs being touted by Gov. Walker is at odds with the economic reality for the rest of the state.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/10/2014]

One Wisconsin Now to Gov. Walker: “Governor, Tear Down Your Wall of Secrecy”

Gov. Walker is publicizing multiple “forums” across the state where, at his direction, top administration officials talk tax policy changes with big business representatives. At the first stop in Beloit that featured Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, the Secretary of the Department of Revenue and business representatives, Kleefisch order the meeting closed to the public and media. Kleefisch has also refused to release a recording of the proceedings made by a taxpayer funded member of her staff.

[One Wisconsin Now, 12/13/2013]

Gov. Walker Doubles Down on Desperation With Latest Tax Scheme to Try to Boost Sagging Prospects

It may be thirteen months before he stands for re-election as Wisconsin Governor, but Scott Walker and his special interest allies are already in full panic mode. According to legislative records obtained by One Wisconsin Now, Gov. Walker’s administration scrambled to have a property tax scheme drafted as a bill the same day as he announced it at a hastily called press conference and mere days after a Democratic opponent for the November 2014 election announced her candidacy.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/14/2013]

Walker Only Sixth Worst Governor

Those companies were accountable in the only way that appeared to matter. The watchdog One Wisconsin Now reported owners and employees of businesses receiving WEDC funds contributed more than $614,000 to Walker’s political campaigns and to the Republican Governors Association, which then contributed lavishly to Walker. [Express Milwaukee, 07/21/2013]

Journal Sentinel investigation provides a case study in WEDC failures

To see the recent struggles of the state's jobs programs, take the case of a missing crane, a seemingly untraceable business owner and $83,000 in squandered taxpayer money. When the state lent the money to Milwaukee Iron Works in the fall of 2010, seemingly everything soured — from the state's spotty follow-up on the delinquent loan and the firm's eventual status as a tax scofflaw to a shortchanged pension fund for the company's workers and even a sloppy job of lawmaking by legislators eliminating the state program. Taxpayers were left with bad debt and no collateral: The crane that was supposed to back up their loan can't be found. The case turned up in an ongoing Journal Sentinel review of the state's job programs that encompassed hundreds of records on delinquent loans and matched a database of tax-delinquent companies against firms that have received state jobs incentives such as grants, loans or other awards. The review found seven companies that benefited from nearly $1.3 million worth of taxpayer subsidies — including loans, grants and loan guarantees — and that owe nearly $300,000 in state taxes and other charges, according to a recent count in state records. One business actually owed taxes at the time the state gave it the award, and others, like Milwaukee Iron Works, had growing financial problems that could have been spotted by state officials had they looked deeper into the companies.

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 07/20/2013]

Gov. Walker's WEDC Pays Off Big... For His Campaign Account

A review of campaign finance records by One Wisconsin Now has found that Gov. Walker's campaign and the Republican Governors Association (RGA) have raked in over $614,000 in donations from individuals associated with businesses receiving tax credits through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). Walker serves as chair of the board entrusted with overseeing the operations of the quasi-private WEDC.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/15/2013]

Research Wing of Business Journals Ranked Walker 40th of 45 Governors on Job Growth

A new national report ranks Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker 40th out of 45 governors scored on their job growth records. On Numbers, the research wing of the Business Journals, analyzed private-sector employment levels in each state during the tenure of its current governor, using seasonally adjusted data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The figures are through May 2013 and do not include the five governors who took office this year. The report shows Wisconsin adding 58,700 private-sector jobs since Walker took office in January 2011, an annual growth rate of 1.07 percent. But that compares with a growth rate of 2 percent for the other 49 states over that period. If Wisconsin had added private-sector jobs at the same pace as the rest of the country under Walker, the state would have added another 51,200 jobs for a total of 109,900.

[Capital Times, 06/30/2013]

#WalkerAt20: ‘Divide and Conquer’

In his twenty years in office, Scott Walker has amassed a truly astounding record of failure. To commemorate the looming anniversary of his first election to office, One Wisconsin Now is highlighting a different and depressing failure of Gov. Walker every day, for twenty days. On tap for today, in a rare candid moment, Gov. Walker is caught on video revealing his strategy of “divide and conquer” to billionaire Wisconsin widow and $510,000 contributor Diane Hendricks.

[One Wisconsin Now, 06/13/2013]

#WalkerAt20: Failing Democracy

In his twenty years in office, Scott Walker has amassed a truly astounding record of failure. To commemorate the looming anniversary of his first election to office, One Wisconsin Now is highlighting a different and depressing failure of Gov. Walker every day, for twenty days. In today's installment, Gov. Walker's anti-voter record is “highlighted”.

[One Wisconsin Now, 06/09/2013]

One Wisconsin Now to Highlight ‘20 Years of Walker Failure’

Beginning June 10, One Wisconsin Now will commemorate over 20 days, the failings, scandals and imbroglios of Gov. Scott Walker's 20-years in elected office. Gov. Walker, who was first elected to the State Assembly on June 29, 1993, has spent virtually no time in the private sector and has enjoyed nearly half his life on the taxpayers' dime, including receiving well over $1 million in salary alone, as well as health care benefits for he and his family.

[One Wisconsin Now, 06/04/2013]

One Wisconsin Now Travels to Iowa to Share Walker “Resume of Failure”

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is traveling to Iowa today to address a gathering of Republican Party activists in another of an increasing number out-of-state sojourns as he ponders a bid for national office. Also making the trip is One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, along with copies of the Walker “Resume of Failure.”

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/22/2013]

Walker wanted to give scandal-plagued WEDC more money

In what parallel universe does a scandal-plagued agency that just got dinged for failing to account for the money it’s been spending get more money? That parallel universe would be Scott Walker’s Wisconsin. There’s something flat-out bizarre about the governor's response to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. fiasco...The governor, who chairs the WEDC board, actually wants to give the agency more money BEFORE the mess is cleaned up. That may make sense to Walker. But in the real world, common sense says this: Fix WEDC before you throw any more taxpayer dollars at the failed experiment.

[Capital Times, 05/09/2013]

Will Legislators OK Growth of Walker's Scandal-Plagued WEDC?

The continuing mismanagement and misuse of public funds at Governor Walker's Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) ought to disqualify the agency from any new funding, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross. Particularly egregious is a 2013-15 budget proposal giving WEDC $11 million in new taxpayer money to run an advertising campaign.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/06/2013]

State audit says Walker’s flagship WEDC broke state law

A blistering audit released Wednesday said Republican Gov. Scott Walker's premier job creation agency repeatedly broke state law in its first year of operation, failed to adequately track money it awarded for economic development projects and sometimes gave money to ineligible recipients...The audit found numerous examples where the agency did not consistently follow the law or existing policies when making awards, and had no policies for determining how to handle delinquent loan amounts. In one example, WEDC executed a $2.5 million contract through a tax credit program that required jobs to be created in order for companies to get the credit. But the contract did not require any jobs be created, the audit said...Employees of the public-private entity also made unexplained purchases of University of Wisconsin football season tickets, alcohol and iTunes gift cards, the audit said. The audit faulted WEDC for not having sufficient policies to administer its $520 million worth of grant, loan and tax credit programs effectively, including some policies required by law. It awarded $80 million in its first year.

[Associated Press, 05/01/2013]

Walker’s flagship jobs agency failed in tracking taxpayer money, audit finds

“A stinging audit has found that the state's flagship jobs agency repeatedly failed last year to follow basic standards in state law for ensuring the clear and proper use of millions of dollars in taxpayer money, prompting lawmakers of both parties to call for immediate changes. The Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. has faced repeated criticism for poor financial controls since Gov. Scott Walker and lawmakers created the quasi-public authority in July 2011 as a replacement for the Department of Commerce. The agency's chief financial officer, Mike Klonsinski, resigned in October when problems came to light. His position remains open - the latest person to take the job resigned after 24 hours to accept a promotion from his old firm.”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 05/01/2013]

Marklein, 'CPA Caucus' Should Put Gov. Walker's WEDC Under the Microscope

Following the “revelation” that the University of Wisconsin System maintains a reserve fund, State Representative and member of the “CPA Caucus” Howard Marklein has vowed to review the finance of more state agencies. One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross suggested Marklein and his GOP cohorts ought to start with Gov. Walker's woefully underperforming Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/29/2013]

Budget Includes Almost $11 Million for WEDC Advertising Campaign

According to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, time isn’t the only thing Gov. Walker is spending to promote his 2016 Republican Presidential ambitions. Tucked away in Gov. Walker’s 2013-15 budget is a provision allocating nearly $11 million in taxpayer funds for an advertising campaign, overseen by his quasi-private Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).

[One Wisconsin Now, 03/14/2013]

Walker's $68B Budget Allocates $0 For Direct Relief From Student Debt Crisis

In his nearly $68 billion state budget proposal, Gov. Walker larders special interests with sweetheart deals and doles out millions in tax breaks for the wealthiest Wisconsinites. But, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross, not one cent is spent to provide direct relief to students or their families being crushed by the trillion-dollar student loan debt crisis.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/26/2013]

What's Gov. Walker WEDC Good For? Promoting His National Political Ambitions

From appearances at Republican Party events in the Western Iowa media market to health care decisions designed to appease to Tea Party extremists instead of help Wisconsin families, Gov. Scott Walker’s top priorities appear to be his political ambitions. The recent announcement that he intends to spend nearly $11 million on a marketing campaign overseen by his scandal plagued Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) is more like a publicly funded, national advertising campaign for himself than a Wisconsin job creation strategy, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/14/2013]

State ranked in top 10 for out-migration

Blame the weather. Blame the economy. Blame Scott Walker. No matter the reason, Wisconsin is among the top 10 states for people moving out. The moving company United Van Lines has been doing the survey for 36 years and analyzed some 125,000 residential moves in the continental U.S. last year. While not scientific, it does provide a nice snapshot of migration patterns, along with fodder for social media chatter. [Capital Times, 02/13/2013]

Some economists say Walker to blame for Wisconsin’s slow economic recovery

Across the country, the economy is slowly but steadily improving. More companies are hiring, consumers are spending again, the stock market is tickling record highs and many Americans say they are feeling more optimistic about the future. But Wisconsin stands somewhat apart from this trend, consistently and stubbornly lagging in job creation and finding itself near the bottom of many measures of economic health...It’s a familiar story across Wisconsin. While fewer businesses are cutting jobs these days, they sure aren’t adding a lot of new employees either. And for those with a job — whether in the private or public sector — the pay raises have been few and far between. So what gives? Some observers point to Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled Legislature. They say the drastic spending cuts in the 2011-2013 state budget, just as the economy was beginning to recover from the recession, have actually made things worse. “Wisconsin did absolutely the wrong thing at the wrong time,” says Kenneth Thomas, a political scientist at the University of Missouri-St. Louis and author of the popular Middle Class Political Economist blog. “You want to practice austerity when things are going well, not the other way around.”

[Capital Times, 02/06/2013]

WISTAX Blames Walker's Epic Jobs Failure on Citizens' Age and Demeanor

The latest report from conservative front group the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance is more of an apology for Gov. Walker’s epic failure to spur new job creation in Wisconsin than an analysis of the reasons behind Wisconsin’s current rank as 42nd in the nation for job growth, according to One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross. The report alleges that it is the fault of Wisconsin’s population for being too old and lacking an entrepreneurial demeanor.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/04/2013]

One Wisconsin Now Statements on Gov. Walker’s Silence on Campaign Contributor

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements on Gov. Walker's silence on his campaign contributor and fundraiser Hank Greenberg suing the federal government over the taxpayer funded bailout of AIG. Greenberg hosted the notorious fundraiser for Walker in his Park Avenue apartment in New York the day nearly one million signatures were filed to recall Gov. Walker.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/10/2013]

Walker Welcomes New Legislative Session

Another statement came from the activist group One Wisconsin Now executive director Scot Ross, who said after two years of partisan political strife and stagnant economy, Walker’s pledge this week didn’t mean much. “Two years ago we got the same song and dance from Gov. Walker and the Republican legislative majorities, but they put raw politics and power grabs before all else at very step of the way,” Ross said. “Their actions offer precious little reason to believe them this time.”

[Wisconsin Gazette, 01/07/2013]

Report: Wisconsin Ranks Near Bottom in Job Creation

The organization One Wisconsin Now, which opposes many of Gov. Walker’s policies, was quick to react to the job creation ranking on Tuesday, saying it shows Walker’s job creation efforts are not working. Executive Director Scot Ross said: “Gov. Walker and his policies have, again, proven to be an abysmal failure for Wisconsin.”

[Milwaukee Public Radio, 01/07/2013]

Walker, GOP's Latest Promises of Moderation at Odds With Record

After two years of unprecedented partisan political strife under their governance, a stagnant economy and record cuts to public education, Gov. Walker and legislative Republicans enter the new legislative session claiming in media reports that they will pursue a moderate political agenda.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/06/2013]

Walker hires interim CEO for WEDC

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross said WMC spent $4 million to help elect Walker and support him in the recall elections. He said he questioned whether the appointment would help restore accountability to the WEDC. “Walker’s WEDC has come up so short because there is no accountability in handing out millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded giveaways to businesses,” Ross said. “And Walker’s ‘solution’ is to put a board member from the state’s biggest business lobby in charge.” [Badger Herald, 10/20/2012]

WEDC loses track of $8M in past due loans

“Gov. Walker’s WEDC has proven to be as unaccountable and unsuccessful at getting the job done for Wisconsin as critics said it would be,” said Scot Ross, executive director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now. “Wisconsin is among the worst states in the nation in creating jobs under Walker and WEDC, and a steady stream of revelations show a poorly run agency that can’t even keep track of the grants and loans it’s giving out.” [Wisconsin State Journal, 10/18/2012]

Friedman Failures Drive Walker's Wisconsin

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements regarding the 100th birthday of the late corporate propagandist Milton Friedman. Many of the failures of Gov. Scott Walker can be traced to the policies espoused by Friedman, most notably massive tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy, while attacking public investments and public employees.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/30/2012]

5 Questions Gov. Walker Should Answer At Tonight’s Debate

Questions continue to mount about Gov. Walker’s candor on serious issues, including his involvement in the secret John Doe investigation of corruption and illegal campaigning by close aides and associates and video showing him telling campaign contributors a very different story than the public. One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne called on Gov. Walker to address the questions about the integrity of his administration in tonight’s debate.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/24/2012]

What Were Your Other Guesses, Walker?

One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne called on Gov. Walker’s campaign to release video to back up their “lucky guess” defense in response to questions about how his campaign was able to produce and run a new television ad citing job information from a state agency the same morning it was publicly released.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/17/2012]

Miraculous or Scandalous?

One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne today announced the filing of public record requests associated with the suspicious timing of a new television ad from Gov. Walker’s campaign, containing previously undisclosed information from an administration jobs report, and denials of consultation between the agency producing the report and the Governor.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/16/2012]

Gov. Walker’s Cross Country Cash Grab Takes Off As Wisconsin Economy Crashes and Burns

Under Gov. Walker, Wisconsin’s economy has tanked, ranking dead last in the nation for job creation and suffering the ignominy of being the only state in the nation with statistically significant job losses over the last year. Meanwhile, Gov. Walker’s cross country cash grab has been a stunning success, netting two-thirds of the $13 million raised from out-of-state contributors, according to One Wisconsin Now’s analysis of his latest campaign finance report filed today.

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/29/2012]

Walker signed the repeal of the Healthy Youth Act along with several anti-women bills

“Gov. Scott Walker signed four bills relating to women’s reproductive health and pay equality without the usual public fanfare last Thursday, a move that came under fire from Democrats and advocacy groups. Walker signed the four bills into law on Thursday and announced their signing, along with 47 other bills, in a statement released the following day. The first three bills relate to abortions in the state, and the fourth relates to women’s health issues, according to the Legislative Reference Bureau. One piece of legislation repeals Wisconsin’s Healthy Youth Act.”

[Badger Herald, 04/09/2012]

Supporters of the equal pay enforcement provisions said they had been effective in addressing Wisconsin’s...

“The Equal Pay law wasn’t just about women—it also offered protection from discrimination based on race, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, and other factors. But it was enacted largely in response to a large gap between men and women’s compensation, one that was worse than average in Wisconsin—in 2009 the state ranked 36th in the country in terms of workplace gender parity...To bring a suit under the law, a plaintiff first had to go through a state-level administrative process to prove discrimination. It was rigorous enough that in the two years the law was in effect, not a single equal-pay lawsuit was filed. Still, the law’s supporters believe it has been effective in spurring businesses to pay women more fairly. Thus by 2010, the state had climbed to 24th in the national gender-parity rankings, with women making 78 percent as much as men, compared to 77 percent nationally. “Since the law was put into place, employers actually took notice and were very conscious of the fact that they had to follow this law or they were at risk of a lawsuit,” Sinicki argues.

[Daily Beast, 04/07/2012]

Walker Signed Equal Pay Repeal and Abortion Restriction Bills In Private and Released Them on Good Friday

Walker, a Republican, signed the bills Thursday but didn't announce the move until midday Friday, when his office released a list of more than 50 bills he signed Thursday and Friday...Walker also signed a bill that prohibits workers from collecting damages in employment discrimination cases. Under current state law, employees who prevail in discrimination lawsuits can collect between $50,000 and $300,000 in compensatory and punitive damages. The Republican bill blocks anyone from collecting such damages in employment discrimination suits. The state Department of Workforce Development could still award an employee back pay, costs and attorney fees, however. Democrats say the bill hurts women who might suffer discrimination in the workplace. [Wisconsin State Journal, 04/07/2012]

Scott Walker Quietly Repeals Wisconsin Equal Pay Law

A Wisconsin law that made it easier for victims of wage discrimination to have their day in court was repealed on Thursday, after Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) quietly signed the bill. The 2009 Equal Pay Enforcement Act was meant to deter employers from discriminating against certain groups by giving workers more avenues via which to press charges. Among other provisions, it allows individuals to plead their cases in the less costly, more accessible state circuit court system, rather than just in federal court.

[Huffington Post, 04/06/2012]

On April 5, 2012 Scott Walker signed SB 202 that repealed the Equal Pay Enforcement Act

The Equal Pay Enforcement Act gave victims of wage discrimination the ability to sue in state courts for punitive and compensatory damages. By repealing the law, Walker made it easier for corporations to discriminate because the adverse financial consequences were lessened if they were caught. In addition, filing suit in state courts is often cheaper and easier than going to federal court so victims may be less likely to pursue claims without the state court option.

[2011 SB 202, 04/05/2012]

'Lie of Year' Award Winner in Madison to Address Corporate CEOs

2010 Politifact “Lie of the Year” award winner, GOP pollster Frank Luntz, addressed a gathering of CEOs sponsored by the state’s big business lobby today in Madison. One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne said Luntz will have his work cut out for him trying to boost Gov. Scott Walker’s record of job losses and policies that cut education and health care while doling out tax cuts for the wealthiest and corporations.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/15/2012]

Scott Walker’s Rhetoric Versus Reality

Governor Scott Walker failed to tackle Wisconsin’s jobs crisis - posting six straight months of job losses here while nationally jobs are being added - and is now poised to take on “the truth” in his second State of the State address.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/24/2012]

Wisconsin 2nd Highest in Nation for New Unemployment Claims

The failed economic agenda of Gov. Scott Walker continues as grim and disturbing news came today from the U.S. Department of Labor that for the week ending December 31, the state of Wisconsin had the second highest number of new unemployment claims of any state in the nation - 10,203 new claims. Michigan with 10,364 new claims, was the only state higher than Wisconsin.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/11/2012]

Walker Opponents Not Caught Up in Holiday Spirit of Latest Campaign Ad

“The jobs losses, cuts to schools and education, and enrichment of corporations paint a far more Dickensian picture than Walker’s ad,” said Scot Ross, leader of the liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now. “Good thing he and the family are ‘volunteering’ for a food kitchen, because his policies are going to make even longer lines as more in the middle class fall into poverty because his policies aren’t working.” [Republic, 12/20/2011]

Business Owner in Latest Walker Ad Thrived During Doyle Administration

The “business owner” featured in the latest Scott Walker television ad saw his business grow 1,300 percent during the administration of Gov. Jim Doyle, according to a self-professed claim in the Business Times from 2008. The business owner is actually a vice chair at the Milwaukee Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, which donated $400,000 in 2010 to the Republican Governors Association to elect Walker.

[One Wisconsin Now, 12/12/2011]

Walker, Texas Raider: Gov. Traveling to Lone Star State Corporate Event; More Unlimited Campaign Cash

 The awful news this week about nearly 10,000 jobs being lost in Wisconsin has not stopped Gov. Scott Walker from his efforts to crisscross the country and raise unlimited campaign contributions the latest being an announcement he will keynote an event in Texas, hosted by that state's leading corporate-funded public policy outfit.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/17/2011]

Statements on Latest Scott Walker Failure: 9,700 More Jobs Gone

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements regarding the latest failure from Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled legislature: a total job loss of 9,700 in October. The news comes after Walker has held two separate so-called “special sessions” on jobs and signed into law $2.3 billion in new tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy, while gutting public and higher education and health care, as well as stripping 175,000 workers of their rights.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/16/2011]

Wind siting rules still stuck in limbo

Hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in potential economic development are stuck in limbo as officials continue to argue over new wind siting rules.…Those rules were scheduled to go into effect in March. But after taking office in January, Republican Gov. Scott Walker introduced a bill to dramatically increase setbacks.Officials in the wind industry said the governor’s proposal would ruin their business in Wisconsin.” [Wisconsin State Journal, 10/09/2011]

Walker Latest Scheme: Public Can Pay $50 to Hear His Job Ideas

Gov. Scott Walker, facing a steadily-increasing state unemployment rate despite passing $2.3 billion in tax cuts to corporations and the wealthy, has announced his latest scheme: charge the public $50 to attend a state-sponsored “jobs summit.” Walker’s fee will likely restrict public access, particularly the unemployed and those in need of jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/19/2011]

One Wisconsin Now Statements On Latest Walker Failure: 2,300 Jobs Gone

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements regarding the latest failure from Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled legislature: a total job loss of 2,300 from July to August and the unemployment rate rising to 7.9 percent. The news comes after Walker signed into law $2.3 billion in new tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy, while gutting public and higher education and health care, as well as stripping 175,000 workers of their rights. [Enewspf.com, 09/15/2011]

Public-Private economic agencies under fire in other states

WEDC has been the source of some controversy. From its inception, critics worried it would wrestle with the same problems that plagued similar hybrid agencies in other states. In Texas, state leaders have gone after officials with TexasOne for making stock deals that allegedly cross the line into conflicts of interest. A Dallas Morning News investigation found the organization had final say over a fund that awarded $16 million to companies with ties to friends and supporters of Gov. Rick Perry, who is now running for the Republican nomination for president. The Michigan Economic Development Corp. got in trouble last year after awarding $9.1 million in tax credits to a convicted embezzler. And recently, the Indiana Economic Development Corp. was scrutinized for inflating job creation numbers and resisting efforts to open its books to the public. But according to Jadin, there is more than enough oversight in place to make sure his new agency will be accountable. "I can't imagine that Commerce was ever as accountable as we will be," Jadin said.

[Wisconsin State Journal, 08/30/2011]

WEDC Working on Hiring, Branding, and Being Nimble

The public-private hybrid agency officially opened July 1, but there still are no outward signs of its existence. Now, some eight weeks in, WEDC officials are working out the details. They've installed new human resources and payroll software, hired employees and set up customer-relations services. But they are trying to fill four vice president slots and several key director positions.

[Wisconsin State Journal, 08/30/2011]

Wisconsin’s chief economic recruiter still is very much under construction

There is this perception that we just took Commerce and privatized it, said Paul Jadin, Commerce secretary and CEO of WEDC. "The truth is, we are creating a whole new organization and there is a lot that goes into that." The governor signed legislation in February abolishing the Commerce Department and replacing it with WEDC, an agency free of the regulatory duties many felt hampered Commerce. Now, some eight weeks in, WEDC officials are working out the details. They've installed new human resources and payroll software, hired employees and set up customer-relations services. But they are trying to fill four vice president slots and several key director positions. And they're still wrestling with how to brand the agency. Should it go by its acronym and phonetic pronunciation, "weed-ic"? Or should it be "The Corporation"?...WEDC is tasked with one thing: attracting and retaining businesses. The agency was given an $83 million budget, almost twice what Commerce received for economic development. Since July, WEDC has awarded more than $34 million in grants it says have created more than 900 planned jobs. That's not a marked jump in the amount or number of awards from what Commerce disbursed in January through July, but officials say they are laying the groundwork for future success.

[Wisconsin State Journal, 08/30/2011]

Wis. unemployment rate increases slightly in July

Scot Ross of the liberal muckraking group One Wisconsin Now jumped on the latest report. “Gov. Scott Walker and the Republicans controlling the Legislature promised us new jobs and they have delivered nothing but new corporate tax breaks and attacks on Wisconsin’s way of life,” he said in a statement. “This latest startling news, that 12,500 private sector jobs were lost in July, is the latest sign that Walker’s scheme of enriching corporate donors with our education and health care tax dollars is a failure.”

[CNBC, 08/17/2011]

One Wisconsin Now Statements on Latest Walker Failure: 12,500 Private Sector Jobs Gone

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements regarding the latest failure from Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-controlled legislature: 12,500 private sector jobs lost in July and the unemployment rate rising to its highest level in almost a year at 7.8 percent. The news comes after Walker signed into law $2.3 billion in new tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy, while gutting public and higher education and health care, as well as stripping 175,000 workers of their rights.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/17/2011]

GE Move Shows Corporate Tax Breaks Are a Failure

Despite Gov. Scott Walker’s six-month sell-off of Wisconsin state government to corporate special interests at the cost of nearly $2 billion over the next decade, General Electric’s X-ray business just announced it is moving its Waukesha headquarters to Beijing, China. Walker and the Republican Legislature just handed out nearly $2 billion in new corporate tax breaks at the expense of schools, kids, seniors and workers. With this news, will Walker and the Republican Legislature finally admit that corporate tax breaks are a failure?

[Wisconsin State Journal, 08/04/2011]

Walker’s Failure Hikes Unemployment Rate; Senate GOP to Cut $56 Million from Newly Unemployed

Wisconsin Senate Republican are expected today to cut $56 million yearly from benefits for newly-unemployed Wisconsin workers just as figures show Wisconsin’s unemployment rate under Gov. Scott Walker has jumped higher than most states in the past two months. This vote comes after it was revealed Gov. Walker spent $500,000 for private legal counsel to the firm where Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus is partner.

[One Wisconsin Now, 07/31/2011]

Under Walker, lost opportunity for “Clean Energy” Jobs

Walker eliminated the Green to Gold Fund, administered by the now defunct Department of Commerce. This was a “green jobs” initiative to encourage new manufacturing and technology related to the development of clean energy, so the state could gradually reduce its reliance on foreign oil. This fund offered $100 million in lower cost loans to manufacturers to retool and expand production related to clean energy. It required specific wage standards as a condition of the loan along with job creation and retention targets (2010 SB 651). The Office of Energy Independence is abolished as well. (2011 Act 32 Budget Comparison, Commerce Budget Summary, page 203, #14; 2011 Act 32 Budget Comparison, Administration Budget Summary, page 51, #19; 2011 Assembly Bill 40, inroduced 3/1/11; Senate Roll Call; Assembly Roll Call) [2011 WI Act 32, 06/26/2011]

One Wisconsin Now Statements on Walker Signing Surrender to Wall Street, Corporations

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross released the following statements regarding Gov. Scott Walker’s planned signing of the 2011-13 Wisconsin state budget on Sunday. Walker’s budget includes tax breaks for corporations and the rich that will cost the state of Wisconsin taxpayers $2.3 billion over the next decade. At the same time, they are raising taxes on the working poor by $70 million, dismantling public education by $1.6 billion and slashing the University of Wisconsin by $250 million.

[One Wisconsin Now, 06/23/2011]

Walker Chairs First Meeting of WEDC Board

Today's meeting of the WEDC board marks a new beginning in the relationship between job creators and government, Governor Walker said. "For too long the Department of Commerce was tasked with regulating job creators. This new public-private partnership will focus solely on the development of Wisconsin's economy and job market. Our number one priority is to create an environment that allows the private sector to get 250,000 people back to work by 2015. The WEDC will play an integral role in achieving this goal."

[State News Service, 05/18/2011]

The Truth About The Wisconsin Budget

A comprehensive analysis authored by the non-partisan One Wisconsin Institute shows that despite claims from Gov. Scott Walker, Wisconsin is not “broke.” The Institute's research contradicts Gov. Walker's assertion, pointing out Wisconsin's Gross Domestic Product has steadily rose the past twenty years and Wisconsin has plenty of overall wealth - but this wealth has shifted to those at the top of the income ladder, while Wisconsin's tax structure is built around the middle class.

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/14/2011]

Link Snacks gets $75k in tax credits from Walker; Gave $50k to RGA for Walker election

An announcement by Gov. Scott Walker on Tuesday that Link Snacks Inc. of Minong, in Washburn County, will receive $75,000 in state tax credits came under fire from a liberal advocacy group because the top executive of the company, and the company, made political donations to the Republican Governors Association. The RGA spent heavily on Walker’s race for governor last year. Walker announced that Link Snacks, a manufacturer of meat snacks, will get economic development tax credits to invest in new equipment. The project will create seven jobs and represents $6.8 million in investments. But Scot Ross, executive director of One Wisconsin Now, said in a statement that “once again, Wisconsin taxpayers are footing Gov. Walker’s handouts to special interest campaign contributors.”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 04/05/2011]

Walker Returns $50,000 in Jack Links’-Related Contributions with $75,000 in Taxpayer Dollars

Gov. Scott Walker has announced a $75,000 taxpayer-financed grant to a company, who along with its Chief Executive Officer, donated nearly $50,000 in 2010 to the Republican Governors Association, which spent $5 million to elect Walker governor, according to a figures obtained from the Internal Revenue Service by One Wisconsin Now. Walker announced the taxpayer-financed grant to the company, Jack Links, Tuesday in a press release.

[One Wisconsin Now, 04/04/2011]

Apprenticeship Opportunities Limited Under Walker

The enforcement of Executive Order #108 was suspended by Governor Walker as of March 2011. This Order was signed by Governor Doyle in 2005 to encourage the employment of apprentices on construction projects for the State of Wisconsin. In this way the state would help create opportunities for younger workers to learn the skills needed for employment in the building and construction trades.

[2011 Executive Order #18, Suspending Executive Order #108, 03/09/2011]

Walker Concocts ‘Scoop and Toss’ Borrowing Scheme to Pay for $140 Million in Special Interest...

Madison— Republican Gov. Scott Walker plans to pay for $140 million in new special interest spending signed into law in January by extending the state’s long term debt in a “scoop and toss” refinancing scheme that will cost untold tens of millions of dollars in additional debt for Wisconsin.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/10/2011]

GOP: ‘Wisconsin is Open for California’s Budget Crisis’

Gov. Scott Walker’s misguided plan to create a supermajority for tax increases ignores that the taxes targeted have not been increased by the legislature in over 30 years. Similar supermajority measures in California have led to that state’s near economic collapse, a record-setting deficit and draconian cuts for critical public investments.

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/23/2011]

Will Insurance Customers Change Companies When GOP Bill Doesn’t Cut Their Rates?

Insurance companies across the state could see a mass exodus of existing Wisconsin customers if rates do not drop immediately after passage of an insurance lobby-supported bill to reduce the required insurance coverage for state drivers. The insurance lobby has blamed required insurance levels for raising rates, leaving customers to reasonably expect rates to drop when the bill passes as part of Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican legislative majority’s historic job-free, deficit-hiking “Special Interest Session.”

[One Wisconsin Now, 01/20/2011]

Can Walker create 250,000 jobs?

It’s a goal that started as a campaign promise, one that drew scorn from critics such as the liberal group One Wisconsin Now, which wrote in February that adding 250,000 more employed people would drop the state’s unemployment rate to near zero. Today, by the same measure, the unemployment rate would sink below zero. [Milwaukee Magazine, 01/19/2011]

GOP: 'Kill Rail to Pay 0.001 Percent for Extending Bush Tax Cuts for Millionaires'

Wisconsin’s Republican U.S. House delegation has given fellow Republican and Gov.-elect Scott Walker a new option in his effort to kill the thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic development high speed rail would bring to Wisconsin: Pay for one thousandth of one percent of the cost of extending the Bush tax cuts to the wealthiest top two percent of income earners.

[One Wisconsin Now, 11/16/2010]

Walker's Real Record on Stem Cells: Ban Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker refuses to admit he would support a ban on embryonic stem cell research if elected governor, but Walker told supporters in 2005 he would have signed a bill Gov. Jim Doyle vetoed at the time that was a direct threat to embryonic stem cell research. Walker told his supporters of the ban in the November 10, 2005 “Walker Weekly,” an electronic newsletter during his failed previous bid for governor.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/19/2010]

One Wisconsin Now Debuts ‘Moving in the Right Direction: Bringing High Speed Rail to Wisconsin’...

The overwhelming benefits of high speed rail set for Wisconsin, including 13,000 new jobs, billions of dollars in benefits and reduced dependence on foreign oil, are the subject of a new One Wisconsin Now video produced by University of Wisconsin-Madison senior William Barnes. The video is available at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEwgv1fQDSQ.

[One Wisconsin Now, 10/13/2010]

Questions for Walker to Answer at Tonight's Debate

In advance of tonight’s first debate between Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, One Wisconsin Now offered the following questions for County Executive Walker to answer about his tax cut plan for the rich and big business, his support for cutting children and working families from BadgerCare health coverage and his failed management of Milwaukee County.

[One Wisconsin Now, 09/23/2010]

Big Insurance, Big Oil, Big Banks Join FOX News in Financing $2 Million in Walker Negative Attacks

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker’s long career of supporting big oil, big banks and big insurance has paid off with enormous contributions for the Republican Governors Association, which has raised $27 million in 2010 alone and has already purchased $1 million in attack ads in Wisconsin. Total spending by the Republican Governors Association to support Walker’s anti-middle class priorities will likely top $2 million this year.

[One Wisconsin Now, 08/17/2010]

Walker's Latest Gimmick: Cut Jobs, Slash Pay

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker refuses to detail how he will pay for his nearly $2 billion in tax cuts that overwhelmingly benefit the rich and big business. But he said late last week that wage and benefit cuts for state workers are one way to close the state’s $2 billion-plus projected state deficit. In order to finance both the tax cuts and close the deficit, Walker would need to cut state worker pay and benefits by 42 percent, or slash 29,000 state jobs.

[One Wisconsin Now, 06/14/2010]

One Wisconsin Now Fact Checks ‘Facts-Free’ RPW Walker Ad

The first television advertisement for Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker’s campaign for governor paid for by the Republican Party of Wisconsin not only is full of distortions and exaggerations, but also ignores the impact of his policies which have been disastrous for Milwaukee, a fact-check conducted by One Wisconsin Now concludes.

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/24/2010]

Walker Ignores Elephant in the Room on Harley-Davidson

“In response to Harley’s news, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker, a Republican candidate for governor, claimed that the state’s move to combined reporting for corporate taxation had hurt the company. But Harley officials have said in the past that combined reporting…had nothing to do with its cutbacks. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 5/3/10]

[One Wisconsin Now, 05/06/2010]

Walker’s Record of Massive Spending Hikes Is in the Bag

Contrary to calls for fiscal restraint in his latest television advertisement, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker voted to increase state spending 84 percent as a member of the state Assembly and has proposed 35 percent in increases to county spending since 2002. Walker voted for $200 billion in total state budget spending, which led to a then-record $3 billion state budget deficit.

[One Wisconsin Now, 03/21/2010]

Former Mayor Called Walker Claim that He Landed GE Headquarters Overblown ‘Revisionist History’

“One recent dust-up involves Walker's talk of his help in landing GE Healthcare's $85 million headquarters in the Milwaukee County Research Park in Wauwatosa in 2004. But the former mayor of Wauwatosa said Walker's part in the project is overblown. ‘That's a good piece of revisionist history,’ said Theresa M. Estness, who was mayor of Wauwatosa from 2000 to 2008. The pitch to GE included more than $30 million in public funds, with nearly $28 million coming from Wauwatosa in the form of a grant and a low-interest loan to the developer to help woo GE and its 2,000 employees. ‘The county executive was never at the table negotiating this,’ she said, adding ‘there was never anyone from the county involved when we were negotiating with GE.’”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 03/21/2010]

Will $2 Billion Buy Walker a Standing Ovation from WMC?

At Tuesday’s Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce lobbying luncheon Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker will likely find support from the corporate lobby for his $2-billion, budget-busting, deficit-doubling plan for tax breaks that mostly benefit corporations and the wealthiest Wisconsinites. What is less likely, is that Walker will explain which drastic cuts he would make to pay for this failed fiscal strategy, according to One Wisconsin Now.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/22/2010]

One Wisconsin Now Statements on the Success, Anniversary of the Recovery Act

One Wisconsin Now released the following statements from Executive Director Scot Ross on the one-year anniversary of the successful America Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). ARRA has provided $2.76 billion to Wisconsin for job creation, schools, transportation, health care, energy and public safety among other critical needs. Over 44,000 Wisconsin jobs have been created, retained and funded through the Recovery Act funds, which some elected officials, most prominently Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker, called for Wisconsin to reject.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/16/2010]

Walker’s Transit Record: The Road to Failure

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker’s call for Wisconsin to reject federal Recovery Act funds for critical job creation and railway infrastructure needs reflects Walker’s long-time failure on transit issues, which have led to among other things, the nation’s highest transit fees for already-struggling Milwaukee County residents.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/15/2010]

Walker Takes $120,000 from Health Industry, Opposes End to Health Insurance Stranglehold

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker has strongly opposed measures to provide more Wisconsin children, pregnant mothers and uninsured adults have affordable health care, at the same time taking more than $120,000 in campaign contributions from the health care industry in just the last six months alone.

[One Wisconsin Now, 02/03/2010]

County Supervisors Said Walker Failed to Market Financing Aid Available to Boost Economic Development

“Milwaukee County supervisors faulted County Executive Scott Walker on Monday, saying he hadn't developed a plan or designated staff to promote financing aid that could boost local economic development. Two major federal lending programs could be tapped by the county to assist private developers by lowering borrowing costs, but the county has been slow to market the aid, supervisors said. ‘That's the problem -- we don't have the staff and we really don't have a plan,’ despite a push by Walker to raise the profile of county economic development efforts, Supervisor Theo Lipscomb said….Supervisor Lynne De Bruin said it was disconcerting that Walker had not acted more aggressively in marketing the programs.”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 01/26/2010]

Walker Took Credit for Summer Youth Employment Program He Had Vetoed

“Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker acknowledged Friday it was too late to apply for 350 county summer jobs he highlighted in an outdoor ceremony at Washington Park on the city's west side. ...Walker vetoed $100,000 of the funding for the program in the 2009 budget, but the County Board overrode the veto on a 15-4 vote. County Board Chairman Lee Holloway criticized Walker for publicizing a program he tried to kill.” [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 05/29/2009]

Walker Wanted to Eliminate County Economic and Community Development Division

“Milwaukee County's economic development efforts would get a lower profile under County Executive Scott Walker's 2009 budget. The Economic and Community Development Division would disappear, its duties parceled out to other departments. The county would no longer have an economic development director, but a lower-paid associate director of real estate, one rung lower, in a revised county bureaucracy. … County Supervisor Toni Clark said she would oppose Walker's move, calling economic development ‘probably the most important division of county government.’”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10/03/2008]

Walker Appointed Campaign Cronies to Economic Development Posts

“Walker's last two choices to lead the county economic development office, Bob Dennik and Tim Russell, came from his campaign and lacked depth in the development business, Clark said. Dennik left the post this week to become an executive with a Pewaukee construction company. Russell is now Walker's community relations director. ‘Walker chooses folks who don't have -the necessary- experience,’ she said. Dennik came under repeated fire from the board the last two years over disappointing land sales results that put the county budget in a jam.”

[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10/03/2008]