“Being a good steward of taxpayers’ money while helping people create jobs is my top priority. With that in mind, I will be discussing a series of dramatic moves with the board of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. at our meeting on Friday.”
That’s what Republican Gov. Scott Walker said in a statement to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on the heels of revelations the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, the quasi-public agency Gov. Walker set up to create jobs, failed to track whether 99 businesses were repaying a total of $8 million in past-due loans over the course of a year. The $8 million in overdue loans the WEDC lost track of constitutes 16% of the agency’s $51 million loan portfolio.
As I’ve written before, Republicans have proven time and time again that while they’re extremely skilled at winning elections, they absolutely suck at what comes next – effectively and responsibly governing. If Gov. Walker were really interested in being a responsible steward of taxpayers’ money, he would have never turned our state’s Department of Commerce into a quasi-public/private entity that faces less scrutiny than a public agency would, and for that matter he’d appoint folks with actual job creation experience to lead that agency, rather than appointing political cronies of his like Ryan Murray who have no meaningful experience.
What’s more, as the Chairman of the WEDC board of directors, shouldn’t Gov. Walker bear some measure of responsibility for the failure of the WEDC to properly monitor repayment of loans made by the WEDC?