It’s Good To Be The KING!
From: A Better Mount Pleasant:
No one knows these issues better than Kim Mahoney.
July 13 at 1:18 PM ·
Here is a publicity piece from Wiseye.Org to showcase the Foxconn project. While the producer does an okay job on challenging some points, he doesn’t go nearly far enough to fact check Jonathan and he just lets other falsehoods slide.
First – we now know that Mount Pleasant was a “serious contender” to get the Foxconn development as early as February 2017. In the meantime, they allowed people to put up pools and big pole barns. Never once did they solicit input from Mount Pleasant residents to find out if they would want to foot the bill or give up land for this massive project. They made the decision for us.
Second – Jonathan says the scope of the project was initially 500 acres, but has more than doubled. Doubled? The three project areas take up 2,900 acres and that doesn’t even include the North Area. They have acquired most of the land already but have no set plans for Areas II and III. Many of those people could have remained in their homes for the next 5-10 years.
Third – he says Racine County residents are “almost universally positive” about the project. Really? He must not be talking to the same people I am talking to. People are pissed about being forced out of their homes, they are worried about the amount of money we have promised to give Foxconn, they are doubtful the 13,00 jobs will materialize, they are concerned about the air pollution, water pollution, storm water runoff and Lake Michigan diversion. Jonathan – you are obviously not in touch with Racine County residents or you are lying.
Fourth – the water diversion is violating the Great Lakes Compact because the water being diverted will be used for manufacturing, not primarily residential. You are setting a terrible precedent.
Fifth – what is causing the air pollution/excess ozone emissions is irrelevant and to bring it up is ridiculous. You completely ignore the fact that the pollution already exists and it is harmful to our health. Now you are adding another major contributor that will exceed the maximum allowable limits for certain air pollution emissions. This goes to show you care nothing about the health of Racine County residents, especially those susceptible to breathing problems.
Sixth – you keep talking about the jobs – the up to 13,000 “middle class high paying” jobs. The average job is promised to be $54,000. Can you support your family on $54,000? Nobody in Wisconsin can support a family for that income. And most of the workers will only be making $30,000, not $54,000. And, they do not anticipate achieving that number until the year 2040 – 22 years from now. You make it seem as if those jobs will magically appear as soon as Foxconn opens its doors in 2020.
Seventh and last – I appreciate you saying that you do not believe eminent domain should be used to acquire property that will be given to Foxconn but you continue to spout the falsehood that 95% of the property acquisitions thus far have been “voluntary.” Each and every homeowner was threatened with eminent domain. If they refuse to sell, the Village will take their property under eminent domain. When someone literally has no choice, it is the opposite of the definition of “voluntary.”
In addition – A Better Mount Pleasant did some fact checking and the math, and what they discovered should give every Taxpayer in the State of Wisconsin grave cause to demand an investigation!
While the story in today’s JT about the guy who scored the first Foxconn license plate is awfully cute, this one is perhaps a bit more relevant to people in our community.
(Again, JT Publisher Mark Lewis sits on the boards of both RAMAC and RCEDC – not exactly well positioned to be the least bit critical of the deal.)
How many times were we told 13,000 jobs with an average salary of $53k per year? So many times, it HAS to be true, right?
A couple things to know:
- The state originally wanted to cap the salaries to be averaged at $100,000. Foxconn wanted no cap at all – all salaries would get averaged.
The state offered $200,000, and then $250,000, and ultimately caved at $400,000. The high paying jobs skew the average – a lot.
With a $100,000 cap to average – Foxconn could pay 65% of its workers $30,000 per year and still make its average salary commitment.
A $400,00 cap to average means Foxconn can pay 93% of its workers $30,000 per year and still make its average salary commitment.
A living wage for a family of 3 in Wisconsin is $59,675.
- The legendary 13,000 jobs? Well, that’s a potential number – as in some day they may hire up to 13,000 people.
As for the initial 3,000 jobs – the expected 500 employees in Milwaukee and 200 employees in Green Bay count towards that number.
Mt. Pleasant is down to 2,300 jobs, but still on the hook for a $860 million TID.
2,300 is a fine number, however Amazon employs 3,000 full time and 5000 part time workers – when they can find them – and it didn’t cost us a dime.
- Mt. Pleasant is scheduled to go back for another round of borrowing. No worries, this time will only be for around $20 million.