Wisconsin Republican Party Chairman Andrew Hitt (left)
and Congressman Bryan Steil discuss the Wisconsin
economy under President Donald Trump’s policies and
regulations at Inpro Corp on Wednesday.
Ashley Haynes/Freeman Staff
MUSKEGO — Local businesses are
singing President Donald Trump’s praises. More specifically, they’re
crediting the president’s economic policies as a factor in helping
their continued growth and success.
On Wednesday morning Congressman Bryan Steil, members of the
Waukesha County business community and representatives from the
Wisconsin Republican Party gathered at Inpro Corp to share their
personal experiences with Trump’s efforts.
“With the current administration, regulations are eased, we have less tax
dollars taken from us so we have more money to put into the economy.
It just starts a snowball effect that carries forward,” said Inpro
Corp Chairman Steve Zigler.
He added that in the last three years, Inpro has not only added 50
jobs, mostly in Wisconsin with a few in southern states, but
expanded its facility to a second floor.
Zigler also said the tax cuts put in place by the president has
given Inpro more funding, which they use for seed money the
following year. Gearbox Express CEO Bruce Neumiller said in the last
eight years, the company has blossomed into the largest independent
wind gearbox manufacturing business in the world.
Neumiller explained that the business sent out its first gearbox in
2012 and will have made $100 million in cumulative revenue by the
end of this year.
But he said Gearbox is still waiting to take advantage of the
economic policies put into place by Trump.
“It hasn’t impacted us yet because we were a startup, so we’ve had
losses over the years. But going forward, we’re projecting nearly
50% this fiscal year. It’s going to have an impact on us — a
positive impact,” Neumiller said.
Wendy Ward Sellers of Realty Executives Southeast said when the
economy is doing well, that can affect several other markets.
“When people have more money, they have more morale and are looking
to improve their quality of life, so housing is a natural place for
them to go,” Sellers said.
She said the most common question she gets is how the market is
doing, which depends on whether a person is a buyer or seller.
Sellers explained there are many more people looking for homes than
there are homes to buy currently, but the market is still good for
buyers — just more competitive.
She credits the strong housing market to “the strong economy, rising
consumer confidence and morale, as well as low interest rates.”
Steil echoed these sentiments, and said there has been significant
growth in Wisconsin over the last three years due to President
“In particular, you look back at the tax cuts that allowed companies
like Inpro and Gearbox to invest. To invest in new jobs, to invest
in new facilities, which allows further growth in our communities
and then it has tangential benefits,” Steil said.
Bruce Neumiller, Gearbox
Express CEO; Steve Zigler, chairman of Inpro Corp;
Wisconsin Republican Party Chairman Andrew Hitt; and
Congressman Bryan Steil discuss how President Donald
Trump’s policies have affected local businesses.
Ashley Haynes/Freeman Staff
By the numbers
Wisconsin Republican Party Chairman Andrew Hitt provided
statistics to back up his statement that Trump has
delivered on his promises to bring back a strong
Hitt said Wisconsin’s unemployment rate has decreased
from 3.8% at this time last year to 2.8% and that since
the Jobs Act of 2017, unemployment has dipped below 2.9%
Hitt also said 53,000 Wisconsin jobs have been created
under Trump, 8,000 of which are in manufacturing.
“The president has put a huge focus on cutting red tape.
For every one new regulation, 22 have gone away, which
is really remarkable when you think about how much
regulation has grown over the years,” Hitt said.
He said the president has “delivered on his promise” to
bring the economy back.
Not a full picture, says Democratic Party
Matt Lowe, chairman of the Waukesha County Democratic
Party, says Trump’s tax breaks work great for big
business owners and corporations who can reinvest their
money into the country, but when looking at the average
worker, the deal might not be as sweet. Lowe said big
businesses have not held up their end of the bargain in
reinvesting in their workers through means like
long-term higher wages.
“I think the economy is a very different story (for the
average worker),” Lowe said.
He said that fears of a recession are common due to the
“reckless Trump trade wars” and that tariffs are making
products more expensive.
Lowe said Wisconsin has also been losing farms due to
trade policies directly linked to Trump.
“They’re hurting Wisconsin workers and hurting Wisconsin
farmers,” Lowe said.
As for the number of jobs created under the president,
Lowe said that number can also be disputed.
He cited updated statistics from March 2019 from the
Bureau of Labor Statistics that say the U.S. economy had
501,000 fewer jobs than initially calculated by an
He disagreed with Republican sentiments that workers and
the general population are feeling secure in the current
state of the economy.
“America used to be a trade and economic leader and
under the president, we have just ran isolationism in
this country and that is detrimental for us because it’s
a world economy,” Lowe said.