Beloit Lawmaker Says Illinois Residents Could Have More To Gain From Foxconn Deal

Aug 24, 2017

Electronics giant Foxconn is talking about building three additional assembly plants, which is part of the $10 billion investment in Wisconsin.

Credit Twitter: @RepSpreitzer

A Foxconn official said the assembly facilities could be built as soon as next year.

The Taiwan-based company announced last month it would build a 1,000 acre plant in southeastern Wisconsin in exchange for large tax incentives. The deal is expected to rake in up to 13,000 jobs for the state.

Mark Spreitzer is a Democratic State Representative from Beloit. He said the problem is that Wisconsin taxpayers will contribute 17 percent to the workers' salaries, but Illinois residents are also eligible to work for the company. Spreitzer said they are not required to pay those taxes. 

Given that the manufacturing plant is being located on the border, Spreitzer said "there’s a real risk that Wisconsin is going to be paying full price for jobs that are at least partially likely to go to Illinois residents.”

Spreitzer said he believes the assembly plants will likely be located in Kenosha or Waukegan. He urges that environmental impacts should be a big consideration when picking locations for those facilities. 

The Democrat also expressed concern about the lack of information Foxconn has provided about the types of jobs it will create and expected wages. 

"I want to make sure that we’re really pushing for jobs that are not going to be automated," he says, "that are going to last over the long haul, and that are going to be enough to support a family.”

Meanwhile, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s top aide said he believes nearly of all the employees at the Foxconn plant would be Wisconsin residents.