(WisBusiness) TUES News Summary — 18 March 2008

From WisBusiness.com …

— Come May 3, AirTran Airways will add a nonstop seasonal flight between General Mitchell International Airport and Washington, D.C.

The move follows the recent U.S. Department of Transportation decision to give AirTran, which is based in Atlanta, the right to add one new daily round-trip flight from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.

Officials at AirTran, which unsuccessfully tried to take over Midwest Air last year, said the new flight between Milwaukee and Washington is part of its growth strategy for 2008. The flights will be on the airline’s Boeing 717 aircraft.

The company will offer introductory $59, one-way fares for a short time. Regular airfare will start at $189 each way.

See release: http://www.wisbusiness.com/index.iml?Article=121131

— According to numbers released by the Department of Revenue, state revenue collections for July through February of this fiscal year were up compared to the same period last year.

A Revenue spokesman said she was unsure how the numbers would affect the state’s deficit and referred questions to the Legislative Fiscal Bureau. Individual income tax collections have risen from just more than $4 billion to a little more than $4.1 billion, a 2.6 percent change.

General sales and use tax collection went up from $2.48 billion to $2.52 billion, a 1.6 percent increase. Corporate and franchise tax collections were down 9.5 percent, from $472.37 million to $427.62 million.

Public utility collection rose about $5 million to $146.17 million, a 3.5 percent change.
Insurance revenue collection rose about $5.5 million to $82.22 million, a 7.4 percent change.

— Learn about the Madison Children’s Museum and other non-profit news and events from a new WisBusiness.com Wisconsin Non-Profit Report.

Read the most recent column:

— GE Healthcare continued as the global market share leader in the compact ultrasound industry in 2007, as cited in a recent industry report issued by Klein Biomedical Consultants.

GE said the company’s global compact ultrasound business grew revenues to $260 million in 2007, growing 50 percent compared from the prior year. The company’s compact ultrasound revenues were $47 million above its nearest competitor, according to the report.

GE’s Healthcare’s ultrasound business is based in Wauwatosa. The company also has offices in Waukesha and is opening a distribution center in Muskego.

See story: http://www.biztimes.com/daily/2008/3/17/#ge-healthcare-continues-to-grow-ultrasound-business



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Press Releases
AirTran Airways Announces Nonstop Service Between Washington, D.C., and Milwaukee
Cars on State – Classic Car Show set for May 10
FEMA Urges Wisconsin Residents to Prepare for Possible Spring Flooding
Governor Doyle Signs Bills into Law to Improve Health Care
Granite Broadcasting Corporation Continues Long-Standing Free Air Time Program for 2008 Political Candidates
Institute for One Wisconsin Launches WMCWatch.org
Lands’ End Announces ‘Teachers Light The Way’ Contest
OFF!(R) Insect Repellant DEET Fact Sheet
State to receive $10,000 grant to improve teens’ safe driving skills
University Moves to Eliminate SSN-Based ID Cards
UW-Madison’s Donald Nichols To Headline Economic Outlook 2008
Wisconsin Power and Light Company Receives Notice of Intent to Sue
Wisconsin Youths Named National Epilepsy Spokespersons
WMEP-led effort to strengthen U.S. suppliers focus of panel

For these and more releases visit http://www.wisbusiness.com/index.iml?Content=82


Spectrum to add workers at Rayovac plant in Fennimore: Spectrum Brands is bringing back jobs — and a new technology — to the Rayovac alkaline battery plant in Fennimore, in southwest Wisconsin, the company will announce in a news conference today. One year after more than 100 of the 275 jobs at the Fennimore plant were shifted to China, Rayovac says it will add 50 positions by May 12. Some of the jobs moved overseas have been added back during the past year, so the new positions will bring total employment to 250 at the factory, 70 miles west of Madison. “It’s great,” said Fennimore Mayor Chuck Stenner. “The more people they employ, it’s great for the area, not just for Fennimore alone.”

PCB ruling favors Appleton firm; jury decides insurers should pay up to $730M for river cleanup : Nine insurance companies will have to pay costs assessed to the former Appleton Papers Inc. for the cleanup of PCB contamination in the lower Fox River, a jury decided Monday. The Brown County case is expected to be appealed. The insurance companies could be required to pay from $550 million to $730 million if the jury’s decision stands and if it is determined that Appleton Papers’ responsibility is that much. Columbia Casualty Co. of Chicago sued Appleton in 2005 (Appleton Papers Inc. changed its name and logo to Appleton in 2003), claiming its policy did not cover PCB damage, and that Appleton didn’t give the insurance company timely notice that it was responsible for the cleanup costs.

NewPage to fill 50 positions in state: 125 jobs to be cut in Kimberly mill shutdown in May… Two months after NewPage announced plans to eliminate 600 jobs companywide, it now is looking to fill as many as 50 positions in central Wisconsin, company officials said. While some of the positions will be in NewPage’s mills in Biron, Whiting and Stevens Point, the bulk of the jobs will be at the Wisconsin Rapids facility. Company spokesman Tim Laatsch said the positions are for “people who are working the lines,” and officials will hire for all shifts. “I think all of the locations are affected to some extent,” he said. “Those numbers are subject to change as plans are continued to be worked through.”

Ethanol plant courted behind closed doors: Since lawsuit, Milton officials pledge openness… Kathy Arndt has two ways to go each night when she leaves Arndt’s Mini-Mart gas station, which she owns in Milton, population about 5,500, and drives to her home about seven miles to the east. Which way she chooses depends on which way the wind blows, specifically which way the wind blows the exhaust from the $70 million United Ethanol plant on the city’s eastern outskirts. “It smells like rotten beer,” Arndt said. “Whichever way the smoke is blowing, I drive the other way.” Metaphorically, it’s an odor some see as lingering from the plant’s opening a year ago this month, after city officials secretly negotiated a development agreement with United Ethanol, which the state’s 4th District Court of Appeals ruled was illegal because it violated state open meetings law.

Summit, Great Wisconsin credit union merger wins approvals: Summit Credit Union and Great Wisconsin Credit Union said Monday that their proposal to merge has been approved by Summit shareholders and has been cleared by the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions and the National Credit Union Administration. Both Summit and Great Wisconsin, both based in Madison, will adopt the Great Wisconsin Credit Union charter upon completion of their planned merger, which was announced in November 2007 and is expected to close in the fall of 2008. The merged credit union will use the Summit name and will become the state’s largest credit union with more than $1 billion in assets. The merged credit unions would serve 110,000 members through a total of 20 locations throughout Wisconsin.

Schneider National turns to fuel hauling: Green Bay trucking firm adds 20 tankers… Schneider National Inc. has moved into the fuel-hauling business, launching its effort with 20 newly purchased tankers and an eye toward possible expansion. The Green Bay firm’s entry into the field comes amid continued strong demand for gasoline and growing opportunity from ethanol. “It can be very profitable,” Charles E. Wilson, longtime editor of industry trade journal Bulk Transporter, said of fuel hauling. “People use a lot of fuel. It’s a high-demand product.” Schneider has incorporated fuel hauling into its bulk division, which already carries such cargo as specialty chemicals.


GREGG HOFFMANN: Contributor, WisBusiness.com

TOM STILL: President, Wisconsin Technology Council

JENNIFER SERENO: Senior manager, Wood Communications Group

STEVE JAGLER: Executive editor, Small Business Times

TOM BURZINSKI: IT executive and consultant

TECHNOLOGY (back to top)
– ARI reports earnings increase

BIOTECH (back to top)
– Manufacturer revs up for biodiesel foray

ECONOMY (back to top)
– Doyle tobacco plan will cost $94 million

– Journal Sentinel joins Yahoo consortium

MANUFACTURING (back to top)
– Kentucky firm buys business from Hendricks

– Merge delays filing annual report

– Metal company finds niche that can stay local

LABOR (back to top)
– Lawsuit alleges Charter underpaid some employees

– Charter Communications sued by workers

– Job outlook good for college grads, survey shows

SMALL BUSINESS (back to top)
– Tough times for incubator Genesis

– 3rd Ward’s Private Gardener to close

INVESTING (back to top)
– Nasdaq to add Orion Energy to clean-energy indexes

– Fed hints at further rate cuts to protect national economy

– Wall Street mixed in seesaw trading

REAL ESTATE (back to top)
– Royster structure stays rooted in Madison

– New Crowne Plaza hotel opens

AGRIBUSINESS (back to top)
– Clark County Board Okays Agri-Business Campus

– State & National Milk Production Up in February

TRANSPORTATION (back to top)
– Northwest will pass on fuel costs in higher fares

– AirTran adding Milwaukee/Washington, D.C., nonstop

RETAIL (back to top)
– Beer likely to flow at Harley festival

– Kohl’s proposes youth art program

REGULATION (back to top)
– Jury: Insurance companies should cover costs of PCB cleanup

– TV stations pay heavily for broadcast change

– Digital billboard rules debated

TOURISM (back to top)
– Hundreds flock to Columbus see filming of Johnny Depp movie

– Time stops for Depp

– It’s ‘magical’ in Columbus

– Harley event moves another step closer to taking place

UTILITIES (back to top)
– WPS to buy out Marinette plant

– Steam plant back in black

– Stormwater utility still in the pipeline

HEALTH CARE (back to top)
– Family physician joins Bellin center in De Pere

– Walgreens taking health clinic services to workplaces

– Money in banks considered safe from credit crisis

– Thrivent report to community May 8

– Wauwatosa Savings to become WaterStone Bank

– National City plunges in wake of Bear Stearns’ fire sale

MANAGEMENT (back to top)
– Weyerhaeuser sells division to IP

– Arneson Re-Elected to Lead Wisconsin Custom Operators

– QPS buys Fox Valley staffing firm

– Youth program sponsor urges support

BUSINESS COLUMNS (back to top)
– Larry Avila: Whether or not we really are in a recession is anyone’s guess

– Andrew E. Farah: Don’t let mistakes undermine IRA value

Media Partners
Small Business Times
Madison Magazine

National Business Roundups ( back to top)
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–CNBC BUSINESS NEWS: http://www.cnbc.com
–ABC BUSINESS NEWS: http://abcnews.go.com/sections/business/
–GOOGLE NEWS: http://news.google.com/news/en/us/business.html

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