Trump: Foxconn CEO confided plant deal could swell to $30B (copy)

In this May 27, 2010, photo, a worker looks out through the logo at the entrance of the Foxconn complex in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen.

PHOTO BY KIN CHEUNG — ASSOCIATED PRESS

Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn plans to build an LCD panel manufacturing facility in the southeastern Wisconsin village of Mount Pleasant, local officials announced Wednesday.

The announcement comes just a few weeks after Gov. Scott Walker signed into law a $3 billion incentive package for the company, on track to be the largest subsidy to a foreign company in U.S. history. 

Foxonn, which first announced its intent to locate a plant in Wisconsin in July, will receive environmental exemptions and tax breaks tied to capital investment, employment and construction materials, in exchange for building a $10 billion LCD manufacturing facility. The company has pledged to create between 3,000 and 13,000 jobs with an average salary of $53,875 plus benefits.

Mount Pleasant, with a population of about 26,000, will be home to a 20 million-square-foot complex expected to be up and running by 2020. Construction on the plant is projected to generate $348 million in state and local tax revenues, employing 10,000 construction workers and indirectly supporting 6,000 additional jobs, according to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation.

Under the legislation approved last month, Foxconn will be eligible for up to $1.5 billion in credits for $9.5 billion of payroll expenditures over a 16-year period, and $1.35 billion in credits for $10.7 billion of capital expenditures over a five-year period. The company will also be eligible for a sales and use tax exemption on building materials, supplies and equipment used for construction of the facility, amounting to about $139 million.

The deal also expedites the legal appeals process for court cases related to businesses within the enterprise zone created under the legislation. Appeals would first be processed by appellate courts, then sent to the state Supreme Court. The Supreme Court could either hear the case or send it back to an appeals court. If a circuit court judge's decision is appealed, the judge's ruling would automatically be put on hold.

The project will be exempt from state wetlands regulations and from preparing an environmental impact statement required by the state for some other projects. If wetlands are destroyed, mitigation efforts will be encouraged to take place within the same watershed. Wetland mitigation will be required to be done on a 2:1 ratio.

According to an analysis by the state's nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau, Wisconsin will break even on the deal in 25 years.

It is unclear what kind of local incentives the project will receive from Mount Pleasant and Racine County.

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Jessie Opoien covers state government and politics for the Capital Times. She joined the Cap Times in 2013 and has also covered Madison life, race relations, culture and music. She has also covered education and politics for the Oshkosh Northwestern.