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Bible, Edward / Planning report: annual overall economic development program report
no. 113

Chapter IV: potentials and constraints to economic development,   pp. [unnumbered]-40 PDF (3.6 MB)

Page 39

sympathize with the people of Beloit who simply do not want a truck route at all through their
neighborhoods. But the fact is that this route is important for reasons of cost savings for
businesses in southwest Wisconsin, especially Green County.
Eliminating the long truck route will not eliminate truck traffic along a state trunk
highway designated as a principal arterial. At present this is an important roadway primarily due
to a lack of viable alternatives to it. It is not a particularly good route for any truck, but it seems
to be the best we have now. The real solution to this issue is to find funding to push up the
construction date of the planned bypass around Beloit, something that is not scheduled to be done
in this decade. The alternative of getting highway 26 in Illinois designated properly for longer
trunks does not fully meet the needs of many companies who rely on getting product to its
destination in the most cost-effective manner.
The Point of Beginnings Heritage, Inc., which serves the counties of Grant, Iowa and
Lafayette, has moved into a new phase as the young organization has applied for and received
tax exempt status under Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3). The group now has a
membership structure, and financial contributions to the corporation are tax deductible to the
extent of the law. All three counties and many municipalities have contributed to the program.
The three counties have supported the organization with financial contributions of $5,000 each
year for the past two years. A budget for 1996 of more than $20,000 has been raised.
Most notable among the accomplishments is the publishing of a 28-page "Surveyor's
Guide" promoting more than 60 historical attractions in 30 communities. Also published were
"Calendar of Events" brochures for 1994 and 1995, and a popular "Sleep and Eat Guide", which
has undergone its second printing. The state-wide Heritage Tourism Conference was held in
Wyoming Township near Spring Green at The Springs and Wintergreen in Iowa County in April
of this year. The Point of Beginnings Organization's presence in southwest Wisconsin was the
reason for the Spring Green location. The "P.O.B.", as it is sometimes known, was host, along
with the Fox-Wisconsin River Heritage Corridor and the Frank Lloyd Wright Heritage Tour.
Approximately 185 people attended the conference sponsored by the Department of Tourism, the
State Historical Society of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Trust for Historic Preservation.
In October 1992, an International Trade, Business and Economic Development Council
(ITBEC) was formed by the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA) in response to a request for
proposal for economic and technical assistance services from the Wisconsin Housing and
Economic Development Authority (WHEDA). Twelve counties in northwest Wisconsin were
included in the ITBEC service area. The twelve county board chairs and representatives of tribes
and business comprise the members of the council. The mission was to encourage economic
development by providing support for international trade and tourism. Over 100 volunteers
provided initial input on a one-year strategic planning process. The Northwest ITBEC was the
initiative of Governor Thompson and the Wisconsin Counties Association.
Through a grant from the Wisconsin Department of Development, two additional ITBEC's
have been formed in West Central and North Central Wisconsin. Interest in forming a Southwest
ITBEC has long been expressed by representatives of the Southwest Badger Resource

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