Governor Doyle Announces $3.5 Million in New Markets Tax Credits for Milwaukee Health Services

Contacts: Kate Venne, WHEDA, 608-334-4609
Anne Lupardus, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2162

Project Will Help Clinic Meet the Medical Needs of Underserved; Will Also Create 53 New Jobs, Retain 157 Good-Paying Jobs

MILWAUKEE – Governor Jim Doyle announced today that Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. (MHS) will receive $3.5 million in New Markets Tax Credits to assist the clinic as it relocates and expands its services at a new facility in the northwest section of the city. The project will not only help MHS better serve the needs of the area’s medically underserved population, it will also create 53 new good-paying jobs and retain 157 jobs.

“Ensuring affordable, accessible health care for all Wisconsin families is at the heart of my Affordability Agenda,” Governor Doyle said. “That’s why I am so pleased to announce a project today that will improve the quality of health care and meet the medical needs of an underserved neighborhood in Milwaukee. On top of that, the project will create and retain high-paying jobs for this community.”

With the help of $3.5 million in New Markets Tax Credits from the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA), MHS was able to purchase a new facility and equipment at the Isaac Coggs Community Health Center to meet the medical needs of the community. MHS had been seeing more than 72,000 visits each year at its Martin Luther King Drive location, and with the closure of the emergency room at St. Michael’s Hospital, the new clinic is anticipating an even greater number of walk-in patients.

“Our mission at MHS is to provide accessible, quality health care services to Milwaukee’s residents, especially those medically underserved families and individuals,” said Dr. Tito Izard, who will lead the new center. “With the opening of this new clinic, we will be able to make sure the people of this community not only receive high-quality medical care, but that they are treated regardless of their ability to pay. This would not have been possible without assistance from the state.”

The new MHS clinic will be able to serve 60 patients per day – up from 35 patients when it first opened – and expects to see about 100-150 patients per day at full capacity. It has four family practitioners, one internal medicine physician, and will have a full-time pediatrician by July 24. Services the new clinic offers include General Practice/Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Behavioral Health Services, and X-Ray and Laboratory Services – with a full-service Pharmacy scheduled to open by July 31.

“This infusion of New Market Tax Credits (NMTC) is a quality health care ‘booster shot’ for our community beset by hospital closings, higher health care costs, and the shrinking value of a dollar,” State Senator Spencer Coggs, Chair of the Board of Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. said. “With the opening of this new clinic, we will have capacity to provide services to 20,000 clients per year in this medically underserved area. The clinic will mean new jobs, higher property values and the stability that a medical clinic provides to the community. That’s a win-win-win.”

Milwaukee Health Services, Inc. is a Federally Qualified Community Health Center that offers a range of primary health services. The center serves everyone regardless of income or third party coverage, and seeks to provide high quality care in accessible locations and at convenient times for the residents of Milwaukee’s north side.

New Markets Tax Credits help promote investment in distressed areas, from historic preservation to low-income housing to brownfields to commercial development. To date, New Markets Tax Credit projects have created over 4,300 new jobs statewide and helped retain over 1,175 jobs in Wisconsin.

WHEDA is Wisconsin’s state housing finance authority. Its goal is to stimulate and preserve affordable housing, small business, and agribusiness.