Will Congressman Mark Neumann Run Wisconsin Like He Runs His Business?

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 3, 2010 Contact: Jill Bader (414) 453-2010 Email: Twitter: @JillBader

Will Congressman Mark Neumann Run Wisconsin Like He Runs His Business? Families Hurt By Neumann Tell Voters “Watch Your Back”

Wauwatosa – Keith Gilkes, campaign manager for Scott Walker, released the following statement on the disturbing news in today’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Congressman Mark Neumann’s business dealings.  Neumann frequently mentions his 26 years of business experience as his qualification to become governor. 

“Congressman Neumann says he wants to run Wisconsin like a business.  Today’s disturbing news about Congressman Neumann’s business practices reveals he has been making millions by breaking contracts, hiding his assets, and using families and customers for personal gain.”  

“This was not an isolated incident.  It was previously reported that Neumann had dodged paying taxes after shifting around properties owned by his various businesses, and even one of his campaign workers had to threaten Neumann with a lawsuit to get paid.”

Congressman Neumann says his 26 years in business makes him qualified to serve as governor.  But the voters have to question if  Neumann’s business practices are what they want to see out of their next governor?  Excerpts from today’s Journal Sentinel:

  • "If you're doing business with him, I'd say, 'Watch your back - and make sure everything in the contract is to your advantage,'" Schmidt said.
  • Not everybody is impressed when Republican gubernatorial candidate Mark Neumann repeatedly touts his business experience.  Dennis Jahns of Kenosha certainly isn't.  In 2008, Jahns and his wife moved into a house built by a now-defunct firm partially owned and run by Neumann, and Jahns can tick off a list of problems with the residence, including a floor-to-ceiling crack in the concrete foundation. The disgruntled Kenosha homeowner says Neumann's employees tell him that these problems from the shoddy construction job are Jahns' headache, not theirs.
  • Steve Schmidt of Waupun is also put off by Neumann's business claims.  "Mark was calling all the shots," the 50-year-old dairy farmer said. "The whole thing just ticks the hell out of me."Schmidt, who isn't politically active, contacted the Journal Sentinel after reading an earlier column regarding Neumann's failure to pay more than $25,000 in transfer fees on millions of dollars' worth of property that he shifted from one entity he owned to another beginning in May 2008.  The dairy farmer openly wonders if his lawsuit prompted Neumann to move those properties around.
  • But the suit contended that Neumann's company intentionally dragged its feet, leading the firm to miss the deadline and allowing them to try to get out of the deal.
  • "The market was also going south, and they wanted out," Schmidt said.
  • Neumann's team tried to have the case tossed on summary judgment, but the judge rejected the request in April 2008. Interestingly, Matt Neumann created MN Holdings a month later, and his father immediately began moving millions of dollars worth of property from Neumann Developments to the new company. A spokesman for Neumann, who has said he owns MN Holdings Inc., declined to answer a question on whether the suit led Neumann to transfer these properties.
  • Contrast that response to the one Neumann gave recently when discussing the fatal O'Donnell Park garage accident while on radio talker Mark Belling's show. Neumann said in the July 1 interview that he would "panic immediately" if he found out his company was responsible for a building with a structural problem.
  • "Why would you leave a homeowner high and dry like that?" Kovachik asked. "Well, not dry. He's got water coming into the basement."

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