Assembly approves WEDC contracts bill

Assembly approves WEDC contracts bill

The state Assembly has approved a bill that would bar Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. employees from negotiating contracts they have a financial stake in.

Republican Rep. Jeff Stone’s bill would ban WEDC board members and employees with a monetary interest in a contract from participating in the deal or exercising any discretion on it. The Assembly approved the measure 80-15 on Tuesday. The bill now goes to the state Senate.

WEDC is reeling in the wake of an audit that revealed the agency hasn’t followed state law, adequately tracked loans and sometimes gave money to companies that didn’t qualify. The Legislature’s budget committee has decided to block new WEDC funding until improvements are made and require WEDC workers to follow ethics and financial disclosure laws.