Adding industrial jobs

April 1, 2010

By Jeff Plale, 7th District State Senator

Recently, Milwaukee received a series of positive job announcements, all of which highlight the hard work that Milwaukee and the state of Wisconsin have done to attract new jobs and cultivate a business-friendly environment.

Ingeteam, a Spanish manufacturer of wind-turbine generators, recently announced that it is opening a $15 million plant in the Menomonee Valley. New job opportunities in construction will begin with the plant’s groundbreaking in April of this year. Manufacturing operations will begin by January 2011, and Ingeteam plans to hire roughly 270 workers by 2015. Ingeteam was awarded $1.6 million in federal clean-tech manufacturing tax credits to make the wind turbine generators and power converter and control systems in Milwaukee. Though Ingeteam has existing operations in seven countries, this will be its first manufacturing plant in North America. Ingeteam executives noted that they chose to locate in Milwaukee because of its highly skilled electrical manufacturing labor pool and the nearby universities with quality engineering programs that offer courses in renewable energy.

Another Spanish company, Talgo Inc., chose Milwaukee as the site of its train manufacturing facility in Wisconsin. The plant, eventually to be located at the former Tower Automotive facility, is expected initially to create 80 jobs. The state purchased two high-speed train sets from Talgo with federal money and asked that those trains be manufactured in Wisconsin. Talgo will use its new Wisconsin facility to build several additional trains for the state of Oregon, which is also purchasing trains from the $8 billion federal high-speed rail initiative.

Reco Cement Products LLC, a start-up business that makes “green” cement, plans to spend $7 million to build a new facility in Milwaukee. Initially, the plant will create 30 jobs; plans for expansion could create around 100 jobs in all. Conventional cement-making is one of the largest producers of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Reco would use recycled materials such as crushed glass and coal fly ash to manufacture cement, much like the new CalStar facility, which uses coal fly ash to manufacture bricks.

If you have any comments or questions regarding this or any other state matter, please contact my office.

Jeff Plale is the state senator for Wisconsin’s Seventh Senate District, which spans from Milwaukee’s East Side to Oak Creek, including downtown, the Third Ward, Bay View, St. Francis, Cudahy, and South Milwaukee. He can be reached locally at (414) 744-1444 or in Madison at (800) 361-5487 or sen.plale@legis.wisconsin.gov.

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