STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAU) - Governor Scott Walker wasn’t the only person singing the praises of small business at Wednesday’s Small Business Summit in Stevens Point, so was Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch.
The Lieutenant Governor says sixty to eighty percent of all new jobs are created by small businesses, including start ups. She says that’s why the administration has worked to make Wisconsin more small business friendly, and they’re slowly seeing the results.
Kleefisch admits the economic recovery and job growth is not as fast as they would like, but Wisconsin is moving in the right direction. With two years behind them, Governor Scott Walker’s goal of 250,000 new jobs in his first term appears to be a difficult objective. Kleefisch says Wisconsin is putting programs in place, making good policy decisions, and enacting reforms to help boost confidence by giving businesses and investors certainty. “We know that uncertainty is the enemy of recovery. The Wall Street Journal estimated a few months ago that we have about 261 billion dollars in unspent investments in the American economy today because of the uncertainty that comes out of the federal government.”
Several Democrats have criticized the Walker administration for showing a balanced budget now with a structural deficit in the future. Kleefisch disagrees with her political opponents. “The deficit that you’re hearing folks talk about is probably not going to be a reality, because there is going to be growth in Wisconsin.” She says more growth means more revenue.
Much of the publicity for the administration’s job growth efforts focuses on high tech manufacturing, but Kleefisch says there are several other sectors of the economy that they are helping grow. “Transportation and logistics, biomedical, freshwater technology, and some other things because we want to make sure that the young people who are being educated in our state today, that folks who are displaced workers who are searching for a new career today, and even ex offenders have opportunities to choose jobs that are not just going to be a paycheck but something that’s actually going to be a career.”The Small Business Summit featured several breakout sessions, and representatives from various branches of state government to answer questions and address issues.