- Foxconn Technology Group announced Tuesday that it has hired 37 contractors to perform various scopes of work or provide services for a new multipurpose building at the company's $10 billion campus, the Wisconsin Valley Science and Technology Park in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin.
- The Taiwanese company and the project's general contractor — the joint venture of M+W Group and Gilbane Building Co. — are following a "Wisconsin first" hiring policy that gives local businesses, or national ones with a local presence, priority when hiring. The chosen businesses come from all around the state, and their specialties range from tile to excavation to supplying the building's equipment. In addition, several companies are veteran-, woman- or minority-owned.
- The 120,000-square-foot building is the first campus structure for Foxconn. The contractors participating in the construction of the park will keep their offices there, but it will also provide space for research and development teams working on advanced display and smart technologies. The start of construction is planned for August, with completion expected by the end of the year.
Last month, Foxconn hired another group of contractors with operations in Wisconsin, with the award total reaching $14 million for major scopes of work like electrical, concrete, elevators, structural steel, mechanical, plumbing and fire protection.
The project goal is to ensure that 60% of the companies hired for the entire buildout of the park are Wisconsin-based and that state residents work 70% of the hours. Of the 70%, 10% will be minorities, women and veterans. The project team also said it wants to see at least 10% of subcontractors come from Racine County.
The $3 billion of tax incentives that the company received to build the LCD factory campus in Wisconsin is the major driver behind the Foxconn team's push to hire local businesses. The company also snared a $252 million commitment from the state to help pay the $500 million tab for widening a portion of Interstate 94 near the park and new infrastructure around the Foxconn property. If the company fails to create the 13,000 promised jobs during the course of its 15-year agreement with the state, or make the investments it said it will, then Foxconn will have to start paying back the appropriate amount of tax credits received.
While states and local governments are eager to see new businesses set up shop and create jobs for their residents, many are starting to tie hiring and other community benefits to those packages, and it typically falls to contractors to make sure that promises made come to pass. In some instances, the construction companies themselves are hit with financial penalties if they fail to meet hiring goals. For example, in Detroit, contractors for the new Red Wings' Little Caesars arena were fined a total of $5.2 million for not maintaining a workforce made up of 51% local residents.