City, county and business officials cooperated on a strong effort, including over $100 million in public financing assistance, to try to draw Kohl's Corp.'s headquarters to downtown Milwaukee's Park East strip, Mayor Tom Barrett said Wednesday morning.
"I couldn't be prouder of the effort we made," Barrett said...
The Menomonee Falls Village Board in August approved plans to spend up to $41 million in village funds to help finance new development, including a possible Kohl's headquarters, at Woodland Prime Business Park. It is located north of Good Hope Road between Appleton Ave. and Highway 45, about five miles northeast of the current Kohl's complex.
If you want another look at why the economic development climate in Wisconsin is so rotten, see how aggressively local governments are willing to spend your money in at attempt not to bring in new businesses from out of state, but rather retain the businesses they already have. Or in Milwaukee's case, steal a business from a neighboring community.
The template for corporations is plain as day. Threaten to leave, even if you don't really want to, and see how many millions local governments will throw at you. Then decide to stay.
Just another reason we need to start making these decisions (and sharing the burdens and benefits) on a broader, more regional basis. Having communities in Waukesha and Milwaukee counties doing battle with each other is a waste of economic effort that brings little net benefit to the region or to the state.