APPLETON — Fox Cities Sign & Lighting Services is one of a handful of area businesses planning to add jobs now that Scott Walker’s job is safe as governor.
Jim Marks, the owner of the sign company, says his business has doubled sales in the last year. He credits Scott Walker, but says the governor's impact hasn't been from reforms or incentives.
“Optimism, I think that's the word,” said Marks. “It's just that he believed things were going to go forward and kept that going. That's what kept me going.”
Marks' attitude toward Walker was mirrored among many people at the Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce Business Expo.
“It's put a lot of people on hold, not making decisions quickly because of the unknowns that has been going on for quite some time with the recall,” said Dave Stubbs, a project manager for Keller.
In a pre-recall election survey of 165 NewNorth businesses, 91% spoke highly of Walker.
Chamber President Shannon Full says many businesses expressed interest in expanding if Walker stayed in office.
“There were many that were saying they were holding off, now we'll see. I think the proof will be in the pudding and to see now how that he is in office, what does that mean,” said Full.
While most businesses at the expo were happy Walker is remaining governor, some employees of the companies said otherwise. They wouldn't talk on camera how Walker impacted their employers, but said personally, Walker's reforms have been detrimental.
“The real true businessman was happy what happened, happened,” said Marks.
Marks says he will hire two new positions now that Walker’s job is safe. Construction company, Keller, says if other businesses follow suit, they will also be looking to add jobs.
“The busier we get, the more help we need to complete those projects,” said Keller.
While not every company at the expo plans to add jobs, chamber leaders say any new positions will be a boost to the area.
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