GREENVILLE – A hangar at Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation in Greenville filled up Thursday morning for a general aviation jobs rally. Among the guests were senators, congressmen and Governor Scott Walker.
“It’s not just about planes, it’s not just about aviation, it’s about good jobs in the state of Wisconsin. General aviation makes that possible,” said Gov. Walker.
General aviation encompasses such things as crop dusters, chartered flights and cargo planes. According to the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, the industry brings $3.5 billion into Wisconsin yearly and its manufacturers support about 1,100 jobs in the state.
“Hopefully as the economy continues to improve we’ll see even more jobs here. It’s a key part of our state’s economy,” said Walker.
Gulfstream itself has added nearly 100 jobs to its Greenville facility since January, with the local workforce up to 840 employees today. Those jobs pay about $60,000 yearly on average.
“The industry provides hundreds of well-paying jobs. In return our employees design, outfit, service and support the world’s most technologically advanced business jets,” said Greg Laabs, vice president/general manager of Gulfstream Appleton.
Which Congressman Tom Petri told FOX 11 is an important point about general aviation: it supports other businesses and in turn other jobs.
“It’s a big part of a lot of organizations keeping themselves together: parts, moving people around to repair equipment, or meet a key customer to build a sale,” said Petri, R-6th District.
And Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson told us that in turn helps keep this area going.
“This supports a lot of business, a lot of industry here in Outagamie County and the greater Fox Valley…adding it up means so much for the community,” said Nelson. After coming to the Fox Valley Thursday, Governor Walker went on to promote technical colleges in Prairie du Chien.