Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Commentary

It Seems to Me: Foxconn benefits felt across state

  • Hoffman-James-070818-7

    Hoffman

    Kevin Harnack

The benefits from the Foxconn project in Racine County are having positive impacts across Wisconsin and are yielding measurable results in all parts of the state, even up here in Jackson County.

This includes the team at Black River Falls-based Hoffman Construction Co., where employment levels have soared and more than 100 jobs have been created as a result of work we have won related to the project in southeastern Wisconsin, some 220 miles from our headquarters.

Just last month, we hired our 100th new employee to help us complete the mass grading project and the road work in and around Foxconn in Mount Pleasant. The grading project began in May, and workers from across Wisconsin are being recruited to complete this important work.

This project, along with the Interstate 94 project in the same area, is helping Hoffman Construction expand its workforce by at least 50 percent in 2018. We are continuing to explore the possibility of hiring more employees for both projects.

The “Wisconsin First” plan, which favors Wisconsin-based companies, has been successful for the Foxconn mass grading project and has helped ensure that employment opportunities are available to all residents across the state.

As of late June, more than 14,000 hours of work had been done by Hoffman Construction on the Foxconn project. Nearly 95 percent of the workers on the project are from Wisconsin, with several employees from Jackson County.

For the past 102 years, Hoffman Construction’s motto has been “Our company is our people,” and our hard-working men and women put in long hours regardless of weather conditions to produce quality results and excellent products.

That is why we pay a true family-supporting wage and provide competitive benefits. That is also why I was honored that President Donald J. Trump highlighted three Hoffman Construction employees during his recent Wisconsin visit for the Foxconn groundbreaking in late June.

I beamed with pride as our associates Celia Griffin, Dawn Wallace and Chris Koski met the president on stage and shared their personal stories of how they have become part of the Hoffman Construction family. They are great examples of our workers who turn drawings and plans into infrastructure to support the continued growth of Wisconsin’s economy. The workers and the community can be proud of this for generations to come. These associates are truly the embodiment of teamwork, and we couldn’t do the work we do without them.

Of particular note, Hoffman Construction has made a concerted effort to hire more women, minorities and veterans to work on our projects. This is more than evident in our work with the Foxconn mass grading project.

The team that is currently working in Racine County is more than 28 percent women, minorities and veterans. Our commitment to hiring and working with these diverse groups and others remain an important cornerstone of our efforts, and we are proud to make this part of our Wisconsin First commitment.

This is an exciting time to be in the construction business, especially in connection with Foxconn. All parts of Wisconsin will see positive economic impacts from this economic development project.

We look forward to the future as we utilize our greatest asset, our employees, who will continue to build up Wisconsin.

Hoffman is president of Hoffman Construction Co.


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