The construction industry hopes spurring the economy will end a swoon in new home starts. Jim Kubasta, an Oshkosh builder, says the souring of the economy over the last few years has had a direct impact on the number of homes his business puts up.

“I used to start two, three homes every month but now just one home,” says Kubasta, the President of the Wisconsin Builders Association.

A statewide survey completed last December shows each new home that’s built generates three full-time jobs according to Brad Boycks, WBA’s Director of Government and Political Affairs. He says new home construction creates a “ripple” effect which will boost businesses such as window or appliance retailers.

State Senator Randy Hopper says retention of jobs can also impact new home starts. For example no one in Fond du Lac wanted to build a new home last summer when it looked like Mercury Marine was leaving the state.

Sen. Hopper (:17)

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Hopper says the state needs to do what it can to spur the economy, which in turn would create jobs in the construction industry. According to the Department of Workforce Development between November of 2006 and November of 2009 the state lost 20,000 jobs in the construction industry.

Contributed by Bob Nelson-KFIZ

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