Wisconsin's public loans struggled amid recession

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GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- A recent analysis of public records shows Wisconsin's local economic development groups began to feel the impact of the Great Recession in 2009.

Gannett Wisconsin Media reports there were only a few business loan write-offs through 2008. But they jumped to 12 the following year and continued to average a dozen per year.

Plastic Composites, a Green Bay start-up, received a $125,000 loan to turn milk jugs into plastic lumber. Officials say most of that loan was written off by Brown County due to a lower demand for construction materials. The decline was attributed to the recession.

The news organization says its investigative team evaluated data from more than 40 municipalities from 2004 to 2013. It found that the groups surveyed issued an average of 67 loans annually.

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