Update, 8 am Nov. 15: A press release from Governor Scott Walker's office confirms he will be at Ruud Lighting in Sturtevant today, Nov. 15, for the company's ground-breaking ceremony.
Original Story: Ruud Lighting officials are staying mum about Governor Scott Walker being part of the company's Nov. 15 ground-breaking ceremony.
Company representatives will dig in for what will be a 208,000 square foot addition to their Sturtevant facility that will bring 469 new jobs over five years. All positions will be full time with benefits and will range from line assembly to engineering to marketing to customer support.
Walker is expected to be part of the festivities, but according to The Journal Times, his office is also not confirming the Governor will be there.
Sturtevant Police Chief Sean Marschke said he was aware of Walker's visit because his department will help State Patrol with traffic control.
An economic package that includes local, county and state financial incentives helped keep the expansion and the jobs in the village. In Sturtevant, trustees approved basically returning Ruud's property taxes to them for five years to help offset the company's $24.5 million investment for both the building and the equipment.
Because the addition lies within Sturtevant's tax incremental financing district, the village can provide this kind of assistance and has done so for other companies located in the Renaissance Business Park. Also part of the deal is that Sturtevant residents will be given first consideration once hiring begins.
On the county level, Ruud may be taking advantage of a new program introduced by Racine County Executive Jim Ladwig for the 2012 budget. Under the guidelines of Ladwig's program, the county will borrow $1 million a year for four years and turn over adminstration of the loans to the Racine County Economic Development Corporation to help companies locate or expand with a condition that county residents get first crack at open jobs.
Representative Cory Mason (D-Racine) and State Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) are expected to attend as well. Wanggaard is also the subject of a recall effort with speculation that if organizers force a recall election, Mason will run against Wanggaard.