THE ANNUAL REPORT ON ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

The purpose of this Annual Report on Economic Development is to provide objective data to assist policymakers and other interested stakeholders in evaluating the effectiveness of economic development programs of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) and other Wisconsin state agencies. The origin of this report is 2007 Wisconsin Act 125. Recognizing the importance of measuring the success of programs deploying taxpayer resources, the Legislature crafted Act 125 to require specified state agencies to report annually by October 1 on the economic development programs they administered during the prior fiscal year.

This report recognizes the contributions of economic development partner organizations throughout the state whose work at a local, regional and statewide level contributes to Wisconsin’s economic vibrancy. The agencies participating in this fiscal year 2023 (FY23) report are WEDC; the Department of Administration; the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection; the Department of Transportation; the Department of Tourism; the Department of Workforce Development; the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority; the Wisconsin Technical College System; and the University of Wisconsin System. WEDC, the state’s lead economic development organization, works with each of these agencies to appropriately identify their economic development programs as defined by state statute and to report on those programs’ performance goals.

WEDC collaborates with more than 600 economic development partners throughout the state in fulfillment of its mission:

To strategically invest in Wisconsin to enhance the economic well-being of people and their businesses and communities.

Included in each agency’s section of this report is information on that agency’s programs, including each program’s outcomes for the year. Note that these program reports reflect only a fraction of the initiatives undertaken by each agency, including WEDC, to build and sustain a healthy Wisconsin economy. Each agency participating in this report engages in numerous additional activities—from talent development and infrastructure investment to community development, industry development and state and regional asset marketing—to help ensure the economic well-being of all Wisconsinites and invest in the future success of our state.

For FY23, each agency was required to provide the following information about its economic development programs:

  • a description of the program;
  • the location of each job created or retained;
  • the industry classification of each job created or retained;
  • a comparison of expected and actual program outcomes;
  • the number of grants made under the program;
  • the number of loans made under the program;
  • the amount of each grant and loan made under the program;
  • the recipient of each grant and loan made under the program;
  • the total amount of tax benefits allocated, and each recipient of a tax benefit verified to the Department of Revenue, under the program; and any recommended changes to the program.

Agencies submit this information to WEDC using an online portal for compilation and publication. The award-level information for each agency is included in the online awards management system at wedc.org/inside-wedc/program-outcomes/

This collaborative approach makes reporting on the state’s economic development programs more comprehensive, transparent and accountable to the public.