Walworth County Economic Development Alliance Newsletter
May 2018
Walworth County Economic Development Alliance
Advocate ~ Catalyst
Facilitator ~ Resource
The best way we can help the local economy is by visiting with businesses to help match resources, create productive networks, and discover new opportunities.

           WCEDA Offices     
       New WCEDA Office
Located on the Gateway campus in the South Building on the corner of Centralia and County Hwy H, Suite 105

SBA May Workshops
8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Madison and Milwaukee
Score Workshops
Milwaukee Business Events Calendar May 2018
Register & Info

WWBIC Perfecting your Pitch
Tuesday, May 15 Info

Elkhorn Community Business Connection
Every 2nd and 4th Wednesday.  
[More Info]

Elkhorn Open House -
May 19, 2018, Info here

State of The County -
May 22, 2018, Register here

The 3 Driving Fundamentals of 
A Brilliant Social Media Campaign

June 12, 2018, at The Abbey
For more info or to register

Lakewood Golf Outing
Friday, June 15th 9 am - 2 pm

WWBIC Business consulting
No Cost
Schedule Appts.
Gateway Campus - Elkhorn


Gateway Business Consulting
9:30 a.m. -11:00 a.m.

East Troy Fab Lab 
The fab lab is open for public use from 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursdays.  

Tech Tutorial
Aram Library
9:30 a.m.


Quickbooks Online Class - Beginners
April dates available
WCEDA Offices

Fundamentals of Supervision
May dates available
(6, two-hour classes)
WCEDA Offices

Connect Communities
East Troy - 3rd Tuesday @ 3:30 p.m.
Elkhorn - 1st Thursday @ 7:30 a.m.
Click here for more info. 

WWBIC to Deliver Free Business Classes at Badger High School
WWBIC joined forces with Badger High School and area partners to offer free business classes to community members in the area. This will be a great resource for small businesses. For more information, click here.



SixSigma/Lean/Continuous Learning
Change Management
Soft Skills
Customized Training
On-site training available
 Click here for more information.

East Troy Community Development Alliance (ETCDA)

Elkhorn Economic Development Alliance (EEDA)

Elkhorn's New Building Improvement Grant
The City of Elkhorn recently hired the firm Redevelopment Resources to conduct a market study to assist in its economic development efforts. The EEDA will be seeking input from business owners and residents. For more information, or to get involved, click here
Wisconsin is currently phasing in a state income tax credit for manufacturers and farmers. These two sectors are currently taxed at 7.9% but will be eligible for a 7.5% tax credit by 2016. Click here for more information

WCEDA Welcomes
New Members
To become a member, click here

Wisconsin Tax Bulletin Click
here to see new tax laws and other tax-related information or details.

Walworth County Business Mentor Network
What studies find with the companies that conduct formal plans is that their revenues are double those that do not conduct plans, and more importantly, their profits are 2.5 times those that do not conduct plans. Obviously, there is a strong case to be made for the value of planning. The good news is that Walworth County have a network of mentors who are ready and willing to help businesses in their planning process. And, the bonus is that these mentors do not charge for their services. Click here to see a video of these mentors. Also, click here to find out about the business mentor network that is available to you. 
Virtual Tenant Program Great program for startup businesses, especially those in technology related areas. Whitewater University Technology Park (WUTP) will offer a number of valuable services for virtual tenants who are working from home or in another location. For a nominal monthly fee of $100, virtual tenants To learn more about this opportunity, click here.




"Success is not final, Failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts" 
~Winston Churchill

Elkhorn Open House - May 19

Elkhorn Economic Development Alliance (EEDA) is a subsidiary of WCEDA. On Saturday, May 19th, EEDA is hosting a city-wide open house as part of a state program called Connect Communities. 22 other communities across the state will participate in this event. Its purpose is to draw locals and visitors to the downtown by featuring historic and unique properties and fun activities as a way for people to discover or re-discover its charm and offerings. This event will also offer a vendor faire on the square, a sidewalk sale, and live music. The event will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is free of charge. Click here for more details. 


County Administrator Dave Bretl and others will provide an update on how the county is doing from an economic perspective. Todd Berry, formerly the president of the Wisconsin Taxpayer's Alliance and Jim Paetsch, Vice President of Milwaukee7 will join Mr. Bretl in this discussion about the fiscal health of Walworth County and Wisconsin. Part of the presentation will discuss the tax implications of the 2018 Tax Reform and the impact of the Foxconn development. The event will take place at The Abbey from 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. More details will be forthcoming soon. To make sure you receive an invitation to register for this event, click here.

Lakewood Golf Outing - Friday, June 15th - 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Lakewood Golf Club is a private golf course in Lake Geneva that has been generously offered the facilities to WCEDA for a fundraiser to benefit economic development efforts within the county. Proceeds will be used to advance the Inspire program, which is a web-based program that interfaces local businesses with students, teachers, and parents. This is a rare opportunity to experience this unique course and clubhouse, which is surrounded by a 300-acre wildlife refuge. People who have participated in this event in the past say its one of the most enjoyable golf events they have attended. A gourmet reception with drinks follows the round and is a great opportunity to connect with the other golfers. Golf packages and other items are also given out as part of a drawing. Registrations are limited. Only 12 foursomes will be permitted to play. Click here for more information or to register.

The Three Driving Fundamentals of a Brilliant Social Media Campaign   
On June 12, 2018,  WCEDA, along with the County Chambers of Commerce will be hosting speakers on social media campaigns for your business. Learn what the best social media marketers do better than the rest. Platforms, tools, and prioritization are the three key fundamentals to a successful social media program. A panel of experts who understand the Walworth County market will guide attendees through these important elements and share real success stories. Attend this event and learn how social media can grow your business. To register click here

Tax Reform Forum - April 26th

WCEDA hosted a tax reform forum April 26th at Geneva National to inform the public about the many changes that will be taking place over the next year. Nearly100 people registered for this event which was sponsored by Town Bank. Five partners and managers from Baker Tilly presented the highlights of this historic reform to our tax code. For the low to moderate earners, the tax filing process was simplified. For the higher earners, it may have gotten considerably more complicated. One of the takeaways was that people should be consulting their tax professionals as soon as possible. Waiting until the end of the year will not allow tax filers to take advantage of the new rules and guidelines. Another major concern that was addressed was the notion of switching from or to a C corporation. The presenters cautioned the audience not to make hasty decisions in this regards. There are many factors to be considered, including the long-term implications of a switch and the intentions to transfer ownership. To view the video of this event, click here. And, if you would like to view the presentation slides that were used, click here.

Workforce Development News

Free Online Course for Startups                                                                                                        
Anyone in Wisconsin interested in starting a business can explore their idea, understand their readiness and move forward thanks to an innovative course offered by the UW-Madison  Small Business Development Center.  Click here for more info.    

Hometown Entrepreneur Loan Program (HELP)

Are you having trouble getting a loan? Are your revenues under $1 million? WCEDA may be able to HELP. We have a loan program through the USDA for small businesses called the Hometown Entrepreneur Loan Program (HELP) that aims to help small business access capital. Many times we can work with banks or other programs like SBA or WHEDA to make a loan work for companies. Click here to review the application, or click here to have someone contact you about this program. Click here for additional funding sources for small businesses and startups.

Crowdfunding for Startups
Obtaining funding is one of the biggest hurdles that most entrepreneurs will have to overcome. If a bank loan won't cover what you, and you don't have connections to investors, it can be tough to know where to begin. Online crowdfunding, raising smaller amounts of money from multiple backers, has become an increasingly common solution to this dilemma because it allows startups to reach out to a large number of potential investors at once. To learn more, click here.

Kiva Zip is a program that makes small microloans to entrepreneurs. Rather than assessing your credit history and financial statements, Kiva Zip uses your character and trust network as a measure of your creditworthiness. Almost 63,000 people have supported a small business owner through Kiva Zip. Click here to learn more about how this program works.

Other News

What is Biz Forge?
Biz Forge is a program that BizStarts runs to help companies start up or grow. It helps you create a
 customized Action Plan that may include combining one-on-one business coaching, attending BizStarts monthly educational workshops called Professional Programs, participating in the Mentor Program, and attending networking events. BizForge is much more than a one-size-fits-all program and your Action Plan is customized to fit your unique needs and stage of development.To learn more about this program that serves Southeastern Wisconsin, click here.

Whitewater Granted Opportunity Zone Designation for Two Tracts

The City of Whitewater learned recently that it has received Federal approval for two proposed Economic Opportunity Zones (EOZs) in the community. The EOZ designation, which will provide an additional economic development tool in the City of Whitewater, was created under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act which Congress passed late last year and President Trump signed into law. “We’re very excited at the quick approval of our two EOZ nominees given by US Treasury Secretary Robert Mnuchin,” said Dave Carlson, Executive Director of the Whitewater Community Development Authority (CDA). Governor Walker had included Whitewater’s two nominees as a part of a broad list of 118 sites statewide which were forwarded to Secretary Mnuchin in late March. “This has the potential to spark some much needed growth in our community,” said Larry Kachel, Chair of the Whitewater CDA. “The EOZ program will allow certain investment gains to be redirected, with significant tax savings, into economic opportunity funds which will make investments in communities like Whitewater.” Investors will be able to earn permanent tax savings on the original capital gain based on how long they keep it invested in the economic opportunity fund. “The details of how the program will operate still need to be ironed out in Washington D.C., but we are excited to be adding this new program to our economic development toolbox,” said Carlson. “We’ll begin working right away with developers who may wish to do projects in Whitewater based on the addition of this new incentive.” Click here to read more.

Changing Patterns of New Construction - What Do They Mean for Municipal Budgets?
More and more pressure is being put on municipalities, which makes economic development initiatives even more important. Since 2006, the state has limited increases in municipal property taxes to the rate of new construction in the community. In recent years, not only has statewide new construction lagged 2006 rates, but fewer cities and villages are growing even modestly. Among those growing the fastest since 2012, 59% are near a major four-lane highway and 42% had created at least one tax incremental finance district since 2011. To read more, click here..


Many communities espouse themselves to be business-, family-, or visitor-friendly, but very often this intent is not reflected by the actual user experience of the place. Frequently, policies that guide development or activity in a space are created without regard for unintentional consequences, or these policies have been created on an ad hoc basis over time which collectively makes it simple for officials to say no to new ideas, people and activities, but much more complicated to say yes to a new idea. Click here to read more.

Equipment Loans for Manufacturing
Click here.

Get a highly anticipated look at the results of our 2017 First Business Economic Survey. With 15 years of data from Wisconsin business leaders, the First Business Economic Survey reflects executives’ assessments of this year’s overall and regional financial performance, as well as predictions for the next year. Read the report here.

Elkhorn Community Business Connection

Elkhorn's new networking group is called "Elkhorn Community Business Connection Group." It is a non-competitive group that will meet every 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month. Meetings start at 8 and are held in the Conference Room of the Elkhorn Chamber. Meetings will last no longer than an hour. For more information, for more information, click here.



Copyright © 2018 Walworth County Economic Development Alliance, All rights reserved.

Derek D'Auria, Executive Director | Email | 262.741-8134
Stephanie Hansen, Executive Assistant | Email | 262.741.8508