MADISON – Gov. Scott Walker announced on Thursday that Wisconsin’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.7 percent, the lowest it has been since November 2000. The governor also announced gummy candy maker HARIBO would build a new manufacturing facility in Pleasant Prairie, bringing 400 news jobs.
With new companies continuing to move into and expand in Wisconsin, and the unemployment rate at historic lows, the new problem facing the state is workforce. There are simply not enough workers to fill the jobs currently available. That is why WMC quickly followed up Thursday’s announcement with a news release calling on the state to begin marketing to Illinois workers that they should move north.
On Friday morning, Jay Weber read from WMC’s news release on his Milwaukee radio show during an interview with the governor.
“The Wisconsin Manufacturers quickly came out lauding your leadership and the super-low unemployment rate and then said quote, ‘With historically low unemployment…There is no way around it, Wisconsin simply does not have the necessary workers to fill the jobs we are creating and currently have available…we must start talking about how to attract workers from other states – especially Illinois.’ Should we start fishing for flat-landers to settle here?”
The governor’s answer was as emphatic as it was simple.
“Absolutely,” Walker stated.
He went on to highlight the influx of jobs that have been created on the north side of the Illinois-Wisconsin border in recent years. Walker also plugged additional investments in workforce training that he included in his 2017-19 state budget proposal.
Listen to the full interview here:
Gov. Walker Thinks Wisconsin Should "Absolutely" Market to Illinois Workers
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