Sen. James: GOP radio address: Investing in the Chippewa Valley

Hello, Sen. Jesse James here.

Last week I attended an exciting event in the Chippewa Valley: the groundbreaking for a new science building at UW Eau Claire. Let me share with you why this is so great.

If you’ve been to the current science building on campus, Phillips Hall, you know that it is decrepit, outdated, and too small. In fact, the building accounted for over 30% of all maintenance work orders on all buildings on campus. From roof leaks to hallways needing to be converted into research spaces, it has been time for an upgrade for UW Eau Claire for a very long time.

In our 2019 budget, I was glad to be able to author the budget motion that got the funding started for a new building. In our most recent budget, I authored the motion to secure the $231 million needed to finish phase 2.

The new building will be state-of-the art, providing room for more STEM and medical majors. There will be space for the latest technology and room to expand, strengthening UW Eau Claire as a leader in undergrad research. This matters more than ever for the Chippewa Valley, as it will help boost our workforce and attract talent to our area.

One cool thing about this project is that Mayo Clinic has partnered to provide $13 million toward the building. This type of private-public partnership helps everybody.

I’m proud of the Legislature for investing in this project, because it shows how evident it is that west- central Wisconsin matters and has promise. We look forward to the advances that come from this new space for students to learn, and to support the Chippewa Valley in helping to move Wisconsin FORWARD.

Thank you.

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