Gov. Walker announces 183 new jobs coming to West Bend

WEST BEND -- Gov. Scott Walker made a jobs announcement Wednesday morning at Spaulding Clinical Research in West Bend. Spaulding Clinical Research is a research facility that tests cardiac care safety equipment.

Gov. Walker announced that Spaulding Clinical Research will receive $850,000 in tax credits through the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. In turn, the company will invest $6 million in the state's economy and create 183 new, full-time jobs over the next two years. It will also help the company's development expansion of its cardiac safety equipment, bringing its practices to on-site and in-home locations.

"What this does is it allows us to keep innovating into some of these new technologies. We test new drugs coming to the market for safety," President Randy Spaulding said.

"This is just the ground floor. This is really part of an exciting investment. These are 183 good, clinical, medical research related jobs, or jobs that pay literally just two cents short of $30 an hour.  Those are good jobs.  They're family-supporting jobs, and they're jobs that are going to grow," Walker said.

This is encouraging news for job growth in Wisconsin. So far this year, close to 18,000 private-sector jobs were added to the state. The unemployment rate is currently at 6.9 percent, which is the lowest it has been in three years.

Walker said Wednesday's announcement is part of his overall promise to add 250,000 jobs by the end of his term.

Critics, however, argue that Wisconsin actually lost thousands of jobs last year, and that Governor Walker has not delivered on his promise. "We continue lag behind other states. It`s a PR campaign, nothing more. Wisconsin led the nation in job loss in 2011," Graeme Zielinski with the Democratic Party of Wisconsin said.

"It's something where we were losing 150,000 jobs in the three years prior to my taking office, so we're leveling things off and we've seen that in the first two months of this year.  I think you see a compounding effect," Walker said.

Governor Walker has acknowledged he is facing a recall, and hopes this will prove that his focus is creating jobs in Wisconsin.

Hiring has already started for the jobs now available at Spaulding, and will continue over the next two years. The City of West Bend and the Economic Development of Washington County have also partnered to offer financial assistance to the company.