MADISON, Wis. – Foxconn Technology Group, the world's largest electronics maker, has reached a new deal with reduced tax breaks for its scaled back manufacturing facility in southeast Wisconsin, Gov. Tony Evers and the the company announced on Monday.
Details of the new deal were not immediately released. It was scheduled to be approved at a Tuesday meeting of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., the state's top jobs agency that previously negotiated the initial deal with Foxconn.
The new deal will reduce the potential tax breaks by billions of dollars and still have potential tax breaks worth more than $10 million for the company, a person with knowledge of the new contract who was not authorized to speak publicly about the deal said Monday.
The original contract with nearly $4 billion in state and local tax incentives was struck in 2017 by then-Gov. Scott Walker. It was based on Taiwan-based Foxconn's promise to build a massive $10 billion flat screen panel manufacturing facility in Mount Pleasant, near the Illinois border, employing up to 13,000 people.
Then-President Donald Trump heralded the original deal as a sign of a revitalized American manufacturing economy, calling the envisioned plant “transformational” and the “eighth wonder of the world.” He traveled to Wisconsin in 2018 for the ground breaking ceremony.
But Foxconn, best known for making Apple iPhones, has continually scaled back its plans for the site and missed employment targets that would trigger state tax credits. The state told Foxconn last year that it would not award it tax credits because the company had made substantial changes in its manufacturing plans and was out of compliance with the tax credit agreement. Foxconn employed 281 people in 2019 in Wisconsin, according to the state economic development agency.
David Callender, a spokesman for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., said the agency does not comment on its discussions with companies “unless and until action has been taken by the board.”
One of the agency's board members, Democratic Assembly Minority Leader Gordon Hintz, said he was encouraged that both sides had agreed to a deal but he still had questions about the contract he will be voting on at the Tuesday meeting.