Earlier this year, we made note of the announcement of a Foxconn manufacturing facility in Wisconsin and the estimated impact the plant would have on the local community. Recent news has shown the incentives package to woo the Taiwanese company to America’s Dairyland has grown. Foxconn manufactures a range of electronics, including Apple’s iPhone, and the Wisconsin plant is planned to specialize in flat screen production.
So what’s changed since this summer’s announcement?
• Incentives have increased by upwards of $1 billion.
o The package now includes the cost of infrastructure projects that would need to be completed to power the plant, accommodate for the housing boom, and set up other basic utilities in the area.
o The land for the facility will be purchased by local communities and given to Foxconn for free.
• State-imposed environmental rules and regulations will not apply to Foxconn’s plant.
• The initial plan to employ approximately 3,000 workers has the potential to balloon up to 13,000 workers.
With the plan to break ground still on schedule for early 2018, it remains to be seen how local communities will coordinate with state officials to begin infrastructure projects and set plans in motion for the eventual completion of the plant. There is also some worry about being able to fill vacant positions once the plant is built. Wisconsin currently has an unemployment rate of just 3.2%, which has some state business leaders worried they will lose current workers to the plant. Meanwhile, Foxconn has been running advertising campaigns to try to encourage workers to come from out of state to work at the plant.
What do you think of the changes to the Foxconn deal for the Wisconsin-based plant? Is it too much in tax incentives and gifts to draw one company to the United States or is it what has to be done to bring jobs? Share with us in the comments below.