Gov. Walker puts up new signs targeted at Illinois businesses - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Gov. Walker puts up new signs targeted at Illinois businesses


ROCK COUNTY (WKOW) -- Gov. Scott Walker unveiled new road signs today announcing that Wisconsin is open for business. But as 27 News found out, you need sharp eyes to see them.

On this stretch of interstate just north of the Illinois border, drivers see the usual 'Welcome to Wisconsin' sign. But starting today Walker hopes they'll get another message too -- one he's been repeating for weeks.

"We're telling people we'd love to have them up in Wisconsin because we're open for business," he said.

At a cost of $1,500, 23 'Open for Business' signs are going up at border crossings across the state. But tiny and sometimes hidden by shrubs, will anybody see them?

"We've got some partners outside of state government who are going to help us with billboards and other attractions to send that message out," Walker said, defending the size of the signs.

Besides, Walker says, the signs are only symbolic, and the real marketing power comes from his menu of tax breaks, tort reform and reduced regulations -- something one newly-minted Republican lawmaker praised.

"This new legislature and this new administration want to move very quickly to help change the business climate in the state and get that message out to the rest of the world and the rest of the country that we truly are open for business," Rep. Amy Loudenbeck (R-Clinton) said.

Earlier in the day Walker visited with business leaders in Beloit, listening to their ideas to charge the local economy. One of the event's organizers, billionaire Diane Hendricks, said she supported Walker's agenda.

"I mean we've got the right attitude," she said. "We've got to have the right regulations, like the governor was talking about today. We need all the pieces put together. Everything has to work. We have to be a pro-business state."

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