Governor Scott Walker says the state’s business climate is improving. He made an appearance at a Vilas County Economic Development meeting Monday at Eagle Waters Resort.
Speaking to a crowd of business people and local officials, Walker said good things are happening in Wisconsin, and noted 13,000 new businesses have been created since he took office. Walker also talked about his Walleye Initiative, which resonated with Dick Mendham, owner of Sunset Resort near Phelps:
"Opening weekend of fishing season, first couple weeks were always the highlight of the resort season, everybody up here was full. Now since the spearing regulations have come into effect, many of us have very little or no business at all."
Ralph Sitzberger, who represents the town of Land O' Lakes on the Vilas County Board of Supervisors, says it was "fantastic" that Governor Walker came to the area for a conversation with business people:
"You just got to give our economic development corporation credit. We are going to do great things in this county - but it's going to take a little time."
The Vilas County Economic Development Corporation was created in 2010 to assist new and existing businesses in Vilas County. Two business incubators have already been established-one in Eagle river, the other in Manitowish Waters-- and one manufacturing incubator is in the works.
Steve Burrill, chair of the Vilas County EDC, says the goal is to stimulate economic growth and to create a sustainable organization. One of the primary projects of the economic development group is working on high speed internet, an initiative that drew support from Judy Aikins from Jensen Aikins Hardware and Appliance in Conover"
"Broadband has been a big, big issue. And I know it's important to our business to have high-speed internet, because so much of our daily activities involve the internet."
The offices of the Vilas County EDC are located at the business incubator, 413 Pine street in Eagle River.