A Democratic state lawmaker wants to see a proposed contract between the state and Foxconn, before the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s board gives its approval to the agreement.
The WEDC board could take up the contract as early as next month. Members have previously only been given an executive summary of similar agreements, when voting on past Enterprise Zone awards. State Senator Tim Carpenter (D-Milwaukee) argues there should be a break with tradition this time, considering the $3 billion in incentives being offered to the company under legislation approved by lawmakers earlier this year.
“I want to see the contract to make sure I know exactly what’s going on…what I’m voting for,” Carpenter says. “As an elected official, I have a responsibility to know what I’m doing.”
Carpenter says the contract is the last chance for the state to make sure Foxconn lives up to its promises to build an LCD manufacturing facility in Racine County, which the company has said could eventually employ up to 13,000 workers. “Wisconsin taxpayers must be protected before Governor Walker’s WEDC turns on the spigot and the taxpayer dollars start to flow,” he argues.
WEDC spokesman Mark Maley says the contract will be made public after it has been executed. He notes that Secretary Mark Hogan has regularly updated the board on the status of negotiations with the company throughout the process.