GOP Sen. Leah Vukmir, a member of the Finance Committee and the Senate assistant majority leader, Tuesday implored the chamber to vote on the Foxconn bill “without delay.”
Vukmir’s call comes after Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, has said for several weeks the budget was the Senate’s priority, though he has also said the Foxconn bill could be completed this month.
Fitzgerald spokeswoman Myranda Tanck said the bill has to go to the Finance Committee and stressed the Senate is staying within the timeline laid out in the MOU the Walker administration signed with Foxconn. That set a Sept. 30 deadline to have the $3 billion incentive package in place.
“We’re going to follow the legislative process,” Tanck said.
The Assembly plans to be on the floor Thursday to vote on the bill, with 7.5 hours set aside for debate, according to the office of Majority Leader Jim Steineke, R-Kaukauna.
Vukmir, R-Brookfield, said she’s ready to vote for the Foxconn bill, saying the state cannot wait any longer and, “Let’s get this bill to the Senate floor.”
“There is no room for mistakes,” Vukmir said. “In today’s environment where states have to be competitive to bring jobs to their citizens, we must close this deal — and now.”
Joint Finance Committee Co-chair Alberta Darling said Tuesday she’d like to get the budget and Foxconn bill done by Labor Day.
“We can multitask,” the River Hills Republican told WisPolitics.com this afternoon. “We need to get this budget done to know how much money we have, but it’s not like we have to stop all consideration of Foxconn.”
Still, she said she was disappointed the Senate and Assembly didn’t work together on the Foxconn bill like they had for the new Milwaukee Bucks arena two years ago.
The Assembly Committee on Jobs and the Economy yesterday evening approved an amended incentive package for the Taiwanese company that would add $20 million for a worker training program and require that the final contract with Foxconn encourage the Taiwanese company to hire Wisconsin workers “when practically possible.”
While Darling said some of the additional oversights included in the Assembly version are “good ideas,” she’d want to first verify whether any changes would be a “deal wrecker” for Foxconn.
She also said JFC was eyeing Aug. 21, 22 or 23 for a public hearing on the Foxconn bill.
A spokesman for fellow Co-chair John Nygren, R-Marinette, said Nygren’s open to holding a public hearing on any of those dates.