foxpolitics.comwhats really going on in the fox cities
12/11/2009
You'd think it was Bangladesh or something

More whining about Wisconsin companies not getting the business. I just don’t get it. The world is flatter and flatter (and smaller and smaller) everyday. Roads are paved with concrete, electric light bulbs are the norm and most of us need not endure the inconvenience of outdoor plumbing in our brutal Wisconsin winters. You wouldn't believe it to hear Dan Cody talk about it.
The contract for recently privatized cleaning operations within several Milwaukee County departments has been awarded to “Mid-American Cleaning Contractors” by County Executive Scott Walker.

“Mid-American Cleaning Contractors” is based in Columbus Ohio, not in Milwaukee County or Wisconsin for that matter. If this sounds familiar, it is. Last summer, Walker caught some heat from local businesses for outsourcing his campaign website to… you guessed it, Ohio!
Oh horrors. (Hey, maybe there’s a reason corporations don’t headquarter in Wisconsin…)

Just for the record, the basis for whining about the Milwaukee cleaning contract appears to be pretty obvious – and of course, Midwest Cleaning secured the business fair and square.
Corporation Counsel William Domina told supervisors that the outsourcing was properly handled as a procurement. By including the outsourcing as part of the county's budget, the County Board gave its blessing to the policy change, he said.

Privatization has been a key bone of contention between Walker and the board for years. Walker has continually pushed to shift county jobs to the private sector as a means of controlling costs. The board has frequently resisted those moves, but acquiesced to the custodial outsourcing when faced with a deep 2010 budget shortfall.

The custodial services outsourcing eliminates more than 90 county jobs. County employees will get a chance to apply for jobs with the new contractors, but likely at lower pay and reduced benefits. County housekeepers are paid $10.18 to $14.64 an hour.

The contract for cleaning the Courthouse complex and county offices at 2711 W. Wells St. has been tentatively awarded to Mid-American Cleaning Contractors and will start Jan. 18. Another firm, Wauwatosa-based [Imagine that.] CleanPower, has been tentatively picked for cleaning the Mental Health Complex and juvenile detention center starting Jan. 10.

Fifteen different private cleaning services bid on the county custodial services contracts.
Here’s another catastrophe, from earlier this month.
A portion of [Racine’s] federally funded contract for LED lights will go to a Waukesha company, which bid lower than Ruud Lighting, the local manufacturer.

The City Council voted Tuesday night to award a $243,000 contract to Ruud Lighting for LED lights for storage garages and exterior lighting on city buildings and a $101,000 contract to Spectrum Lighting Ltd, a light distributor in Waukesha.

Spectrum was the lowest bidder for the streetlights, said Richard Jones, the commissioner of public works. The streetlights will be manufactured in Indianapolis, Jones said. [Oh horrors.]

Even though Ruud Lighting is located in Racine, the city is not able to give preference to local companies, Jones said.
Oh my gosh!!! 42.4 miles from Spectrum Lighting to Racine's City Hall. You’d think it was Bangladesh or something.

Update: What if all Italy wanted to do was to "buy local?" Mortrara device lands in Italian ambulances

Jo Egelhoff, FoxPolitics.net