OCONTO COUNTY - A local cheese maker is expanding operations in Northeast Wisconsin.
Green Bay-based BelGioioso Cheese announced Tuesday it will build a new plant right next to its factory in Chase, near Pulaski.
Local officials say the $15 million project will include doubling the workforce at the current facility.
Al Szczepanski has farmed his land in Chase for thirty years. He and his wife milk about 100 cows, exclusively for BelGioioso Cheese.
"I'm proud to be a part of what they are. They're a well-known company," said Szczepanski.
BelGioioso says the 160,000 square foot facility will be built just north of the company's current facility in the Town of Chase. The Oconto County zoning committee approved zoning changes to allow the expansion Tuesday morning.
"For the tax base it's going to bring in some revenue for the community. It's going to bring in some revenue for the town," said Pat Virtues, Oconto County zoning and planning administrator.
Virtues says the new facility will hire new workers as well.
"They're looking to double the number of employees that are there. I believe they had 45 employees that they mentioned," said Virtues.
Company officials would not confirm the number of new positions the expansion will create. It did say those new workers will help the local economy.
"It ensures a good stable market for dairy farmers in the area, a place to ship and sell their milk. Of course an economic effect for more employees in the area spending their money in local stores. It will help everyone," said Mark Schleitwiler, VP for Finance, BelGioioso Cheese.
Szczepanski says dairy farmers may look to the new factory, as a new place to sell their milk.
"When you have a steady market, and you have a quality product, it ensures a place for your farm products to go. Our milk is something that we're proud to have the consumer see on the shelves," said Szczepanski.
The Oconto County Board is scheduled to approve the measure at its April 19th meeting.
BelGioioso Cheese officials say if the plan is approved, construction could begin in a few weeks and the plan could be open for business by the end of the year.
Marinette Marine is preparing to christen one of its Littoral Combat Ships.
A survey of local businesses looked at employee numbers and overall outlook for the coming year.
Those who do go to the Packers-Falcons game Sunday will help honor a green and gold legend.
The cold caused some problems in the Fox Valley Friday.
A donation from an area bank will be making a difference in the years to come for Green Bay East High School.
A Pearl Harbor survivor was given a special honor Friday morning at Green Bay East High School.