(WisBusiness) WED News Summary — 10 Sept. 2008

From WisBusiness.com …

— Midwest Express has notified the state that between Nov. 7 and Nov. 21 it will begin a layoff of employees at two sites in Milwaukee — the Milwaukee airport and at its hangar on West Air Cargo Way.

The total number of affected workers: 186, consisting of 72 pilots, 82 attendants and 31 non-union employees. Midwest Express cited a rapid rise in fuel costs and described the layoffs as temporary furloughs, but could not say how long the furloughs might last.

— Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett again offered to split $91.5 million in federal transportation funds with the county Tuesday to solve a 17-year-old stand off over the funds.

But Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker told Barrett he could only agree to the split if the city could come up with the $3 million annually that he said the mayor’s streetcar proposal would cause the county transit system to lose in state aid.

The two appeared at Marquette University this afternoon to debate what to do with the money as part of the school’s “On the Issues with Mike Gousha” series. The funds have been tied up for 17 years as the city and county have sought a compromise on how to use the money. The two would have to reach an agreement first on how to use the money before the deal could move on to the other approvals it would need to become reality.

Barrett said at this point, the money should simply be split by the two sides. He has been pushing to use the money for a streetcar loop in downtown Milwaukee in addition to bus rapid transit, while Walker has been pushing to use the money for a bus rapid transit system without a rail component.

“Let’s cut the baby in half,” Barrett said.

Walker initially insisted all of the money should go to the bus rapid transit system but later offered to agree to the split if the city could come up with the $3 million annually.

Listen to the audio

— Kikkoman Corp. Chairman Yuzaburo Mogi figures he has been to Wisconsin at least 200 times in the past 35 years.

So he was on familiar ground Tuesday when he dedicated his company’s new research-and-development lab at the University Research Park on Madison’s west side.

Mogi said he has high hopes that Kikkoman scientists and UW-Madison researchers can collaborate on new food products in coming years. The lab will open early next year.

“Kikkoman and Wisconsin have enjoyed a long, productive relationship,” said Mogi, who headed the team that opened his company’s soy sauce production facility in Wallworth County in 1963. “I am sure it will continue with this lab.”

See interview with Mogi later at www.wisbusiness.com

See the press release about the lab’s opening:

http://www.wispolitics.com/index.iml?Article=135524

— Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett will soon kick off the new Milwaukee Foreclosure Partnership Initiative, a formal effort to address the mortgage foreclosure crisis in the city.

The kickoff will take place Sept. 18 at Convent Hill, 455 E. Ogden. in Milwaukee

See more from the Small Business Times:

http://www.biztimes.com/daily/2008/9/9/#barrett-launches-foreclosure-response-project

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WisPolitics.com/WisBusiness.com: “Diagnosing a Policy Fix to U.S. Health Care”

WisPolitics.com/WisBusiness.com is convening a half-day conference Friday, Sept. 19 at the Alliant Energy Center Exhibition Hall in Madison to bring together national, state and Canadian experts to discuss how health care providers, insurance companies and policy makers are addressing proposed health care changes this election year.

Highlighting the “Diagnosing a Policy Fix to U.S. Health Care” conference are: Dr. Ken Thorpe, executive director of the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease and the former Deputy Assistant Secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Greg Scandlen, a senior fellow of the Heartland Institute with deep experience in the insurance industry; and Antonia Maioni, director of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada who’s an expert on the U.S. and Canadian health care systems.

Other conference participants include: Dr. Doug Reding, vice president of the Marshfield Clinic and chair of the Clinic’s Government Relations Committee; Debra Whitman, staff director of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging; former State Department of Administration Secretary George Lightbourn, now with the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute; and state Sen. Jon Erpenbach, D-Middleton, author of the “Healthy Wisconsin” universal health care plan.

The event is open to the public. Individual tickets cost $60 each. Tables are available for purchase on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of $450. Student discounts also are available. The ticket price includes two meals.

For ticket information, contact Jim Greer at 608-237-6296 and [email protected]

Initial sponsors for this event include the Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease (PFCD), Marshfield Clinic/Security Health Plan, Dean/St. Mary’s and Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc. The government of Canada is an event partner.

See more: http://www.wispolitics.com/index.iml?Article=135065

 

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Press Releases
· Clifton Gunderson: Presents free tax webinar for not-for-profit organizations
· Manpower: Employment outlook survey shows slower hiring ahead
· Midwest Environmental Advocates: Will host visitors from Israel’s Arava Institute for Environmental Studies
· New North: Meeting focuses on healthcare for small business owners

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


TOP STORIES
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Kikkoman to open food lab in Madison: The latest in healthy, soy-based foods could someday sprout from a lab here in Madison. Japanese dignitaries came to University Research Park on Tuesday to dedicate the Kikkoman USA Research and Development Laboratory, to be created at the MGE Innovation Center, 505 S. Rosa Road. The lab will be Kikkoman’s fourth worldwide and the first of its kind in the U.S.
http://www.madison.com/wsj/home/biz/304171

Proposed Cassville power plant’s cost estimate goes up: The cost of a proposed coal-fired power plant in southwestern Wisconsin has risen by $100 million because of rising equipment and labor costs, Alliant Energy Corp. said Tuesday. In a filing with securities regulators, Alliant said it now projects that the Cassville power plant will cost $1.2 billion to $1.3 billion to build. This is the second time the price of the project has been increased in the last several months.
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792929

World Class Wire & Cable to be acquired by Anixter: World Class Wire & Cable Inc., a Waukesha distributor of electrical wire and cable, has tentatively agreed to be purchased by Anixter International Inc. for more than $60 million. World Class Wire generates approximately $60 million per year in annual sales from its operations in Waukesha. Its founder and president, James Lindenberg, has received several business honors recognizing growth and entrepreneurship. One of his recent honors was being named winner in the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2007 Award in the Lake Michigan Area program.
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily21.html

Both sides gear up for a fight over paid sick leave: On the November ballot, voters in the city of Milwaukee will face a binding referendum asking whether business owners should be required to offer paid sick leave to employees. If passed, the legislation would require private employers in the city of Milwaukee to give employees a minimum of one hour paid sick leave for every 30 hours the employee works. That would mean a full-time employee would receive 72 hours, or nine work days, per year of paid sick leave. Businesses with fewer than 10 employees would be required to offer 40 hours, or five days, of paid sick leave per year to full-time employees. Unused hours would roll over to the following year and employees could use their paid sick days to care for themselves, their children or parents.
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/focus2.html?b=1220846400^1695879

Bemis to close facility in Menomonee Falls, cut jobs: The Bemis Manufacturing Co. has informed Wisconsin officials it will eliminate about 140 jobs when it closes its Menomonee Falls facility starting in two months.
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/GPG03/809100693/1247

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WISBUSINESS FEATURED COLUMNISTS

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
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TECHNOLOGY (back to top)
– Special agent to offer tips to stay safe on Internet
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC0101/809100471/1004&located=RSS

– Funeral homes are now offering Webcasts of services, burials
http://www.madison.com/tct/business/304186

ECONOMY (back to top)
– Menasha: Expo puts spotlight on wealth of services
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC03/809100475/1028

MANUFACTURING (back to top)
– Valley steam line casualty of Neenah’s Glatfelter demolition
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC0101/809100470/1004&located=RSS

– Gehl sale won’t affect new headquarters
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792894

– Kikkoman, state go way back
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792914

– Johnson Controls adheres to goals
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792915

LABOR (back to top)
– ‘Green’ projects create jobs, report says
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792895

– Kraft workers may be near deal in lawsuit
http://www.madison.com/wsj/home/biz/304173

SMALL BUSINESS (back to top)
– Green Bay: Republic Chophouse to open Sept. 19
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/GPG03/809100698/1247

– Instant Replay to replace Ground Round in Green Bay
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/GPG03/809100697/1247

– ‘Mustard Girl’ follows heart, signs to success
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/WDH03/809100429/1618

– Musicnotes.com near 80 percent market share
http://www.madison.com/tct/business/304115

INVESTING (back to top)
– Wall Street ends lower on concerns
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/MNH03/809100415/1768

REAL ESTATE (back to top)
– Redevelopment Authority will continue Green Bay riverfront agreement
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/GPG03/809100696/1247

TRANSPORTATION (back to top)
– Outagamie County: Newest airport tenant adds Orlando service
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC0101/809100442/1004&located=RSS

– Mitchell passenger counts continue to set records
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily16.html

RETAIL (back to top)
– Sonic eyes La Crosse for expansion
http://www.rivervalleynewspapers.com/articles/2008/09/10/business/00cahalan.txt

– Madison: Business Beat: CVS project may jump-start Union Corners
http://www.madison.com/tct/business/304162

REGULATION (back to top)
– Panel plans review of Packers party houses
http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/GPG0101/809100669/1207&located=RSS

– Humana pays state to settle Medicare-related allegations
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792927

UTILITIES (back to top)
– American Superconductor launches new wind power product
http://www.madison.com/tct/business/304100

– Despite drop in natural gas prices, heating costs will rise
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=792926

HEALTH CARE (back to top)
– Make no mistake: Prepping for Medicare’s refusal to cover medical errors
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/focus1.html?b=1220846400^1695865

– Harry and Louise are back, still worried about health care
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/story8.html?b=1220846400^1695649

FINANCIAL SERVICES (back to top)
– Schaetz shapes agency’s strategy for acquisitions
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/focus3.html?b=1220846400^1695890

– Barrett launching foreclosure prevention program
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily17.html

– New Brookfield bank opens with updated name
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily20.html

– Harris finalizes conversion, new signage for area banks
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily19.html

MANAGEMENT (back to top)
– Wausau: City’s retired attorney takes job
http://www.wausaudailyherald.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/WDH0101/809100619/1581&located=RSS

– Oshkosh chamber picks new chairman
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC03/809100456/1028

– Home builders name new board members
http://www.postcrescent.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080910/APC03/809100459/1028

– Rep managing director Shields to leave
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily22.html

– United Industries founder Pratt named interim chief of Gander Mountain
http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2008/09/08/daily15.html

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