Ethnie Groves, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2156
MILWAUKEE – Governor Jim Doyle announced today that the state will provide $500,000 from the Department of Commerce for the Greater Milwaukee Economic Development Partnership.
The regional collaboration will bring together public and private sector leaders from seven counties including Kenosha, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Walworth, Washington, and Waukesha Counties to work aggressively to create a new regional entity that will encourage investment and drive the economic development of Southeastern Wisconsin.
“This funding will help move this important partnership forward – helping to develop a strategic brand identity for the region, create a nerve center of information for prospective and existing businesses, and much more,” Governor Doyle said. “In today’s increasingly competitive, and increasingly global, economy – regional cooperation is vital. It will create a consistent voice for this area that is heard not only across Wisconsin and the country – but around the world.”
The $12 million, five-year campaign employs techniques and programs proven to be successful in other areas of the county, and focuses on the attraction and retention of companies creating high-end jobs. The initiative was designed by the leadership of the Greater Milwaukee Committee and the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce. A 30-member Economic Development Council will oversee and implement plans for the initiative.
Significant funding for the development of this partnership has already been secured. In addition to the $500,000 Governor Doyle will provide, the City of Milwaukee will provide $100,000, and four of the counties will each provide $25,000. The private sector will provide the majority of support for the initiative.
A major strategic focus of Governor Doyle’s Grow Wisconsin plan was to encourage regional cooperation, recognizing that what happens in one community inevitably affects what happens in the surrounding region, and economic gains and losses know no political boundaries.
“Collaboration helps move the Wisconsin economy to the high end – providing the best goods and services with the most educated, highly trained workforce in the country,” Governor Doyle said. “That’s my vision for Wisconsin, and I look forward to working with the Greater Milwaukee Regional Economic Development Partnership as we continue to move toward that vision in Southeastern Wisconsin.”