Sunday, May 6, 2018

Foxconn always planned WI plant as lower-skills hub

I'm not sure why Foxconn's intention to hire thousands of lower-skill workers for lower-tech-and-wage jobs in Wisconsin is worth the Sunday Journal Sentinel hard-copy banner.

On August 11th, I wrote:
WI now talking about < $15-per-hour Foxconn jobs
For the record:
Walker's initial Foxconn hype focused on new jobs averaging about $54,000 annually, but Wisconsin is now acknowledging it will subsidize those at the $30,000 level.
Assembly Republicans introduced revisions to the bill Friday. The new version retains the tax breaks but ties them to jobs created that pay at least $30,000 and exempts salaries over $100,000 from the calculations.
With 2,080 hours in a working year - - 40 hours x 52 weeks - - the subsidies to Foxconn will include jobs paying less than $15 per hour.
And aren't these the kind of jobs open to automation?
And will Foxconn be paid by Wisconsin taxpayers when these jobs are created, then robotized out of existence...?
One more thought: A financial calculator finds the average income needed for a family of four to live a "modest but adequate" lifestyle in Kenosha County is $81,457.
That posting was a follow-up to an August 7th analysis that made clear that Foxconn had somewhere other than SE WI in mind for a high-tech, R&D center:
Foxconn eyes MI as high-tech development site 
Chinese media and The Detroit News are reporting that Tawian-based Foxconn is eyeing a Michigan investment in driverless car, artificial intelligence and other high-tech fields.
As they say across the lake, Michigan is leading the way in driverless car tech...
So... it's worth asking in light of the Michigan-focused reports if states will be played off each other for Foxconn investments, and if Wisconsin is overpaying with its $3 billion incentive and water-rule bending package while Michigan has pledged $200 million, and whether artificial intelligence and driverless car technology have more lasting growth potential than flat screen television and other LCD panel manufacturing.
Final thought, and as I've pointed out often, that the WI Foxconn plant is in GOP Assembly Speaker Robin Vos' district, and needs to attract thousands of lower-income workers who are less likely-to own cars to an area Vos has worked hard to strip of regional transit coordination and connections is just plain stupid.
Vos' long transit blockade does not help Racine's Foxconn future
The posts cited above are at this archive.

Final thought: It's no secret that development and opportunity in SE WI have been distorted by anti-urban public policy decisions that disconnected minorities who are concentrated in Milwaukee - - the biggest city in the state but landlocked by state law - - from jobs, housing and other regional benefits.

This post is one of the summaries on that topic I've posted over the years:
State and regional governments keep Milwaukee, minorities isolated, part II
I am also adding here a link to SEWRPC's most recent report on affirmative action, hiring and staffing, and note that, as it has in the past, the agency says in these reports that it continues to struggle attracting minorities to its most-senior positions.
And SEWRPC candidly includes this ironic, telling, all-encompassing reality about jobs and the Milwaukee-centered region which Scott Walker's anti-urban, anti-transit policies have made worse: 
Transit services have -- at least temporarily -- been terminated by Waukesha County to the Commission’s primary work place in the Waukesha area. 
Today 38 percent of Commission employees commute from Milwaukee County residences. The Commission has long recommended in its plans, and advocates strongly for improved transit service to job centers throughout the Region. 
The Commission has identified the severe transit funding problems in the Region, and the need for dedicated funding. 
Echoing its 2012 affirmative action report:
In its 2011-2012 Affirmative action report - - click on the pdf at the bottom of this SEWRPC page - - SEWRPC says:
Transit services have -- at least temporarily -- been terminated by Waukesha County to the Commission’s primary work place in the Waukesha area.
Four-to-five years is "temporarily"?

1 comment:

Richard E. Schallert said...

I left Racine a very long time ago. The soot in the air was so bad then that, on a very cloudy winter day, you could lick your lips and "taste" the soot. Fortunately, the air and water thereabouts has been cleaned up very well since then. HOWEVER, the lack of decent jobs, with a living wage, reasonable benefits and some sense of long term security are still very elusive. Some family members, some high school classmates,some friends, etc. still remain, working long and hard to do well for Racine. I admire and respect them all. ]
Yet I cannot respect the Republicans in our State Legislature who have done so very little to help the minorities located in southeastern Wisconsin into our society. Their attitudes, behaviors, political actions, etc. are indicative of a very obvious white racist stance that is simply not acceptable to our great State.