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Job creation will continue recession recovery

Nearly one in five Iowa businesses expects to add workers over the next few months, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. It found that Iowa’s fourth-quarter outlook is the third best in the country. |From Senator Amanda Ragan

Nearly one in five Iowa businesses expects to add workers over the next few months, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. It found that Iowa’s fourth-quarter outlook is the third best in the country. With more than 100,000 unemployed Iowans looking for jobs, this is good news for employers and workers alike.

In just the last year, Iowa has recovered about one-third of the jobs lost during the 2007-2009 recession. Our state has rebounded from the national better than most and has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation. But we can’t let our efforts stall.

We must make job creation and economic growth our top priority. As we prepare for the 2012 session, I’m working on a commercial property tax break that will give every Iowa business a tax cut, will provide the most help to small business owners, and won’t shift property taxes to homeowners or force local communities to cut critical services. This will help provide more of the resources Iowa employers need to hire workers, expand their businesses and grow our economy.

For several years now, legislators have balanced the state budget without raising taxes. The positive impact on Iowa’s economy is evident. The most recent update from Iowa’s nonpartisan Fiscal Services Division projects an ending balance of more than $483 million when the books are officially closed on the 2011 budget. In addition, we should have about $594 million in the state’s cash reserve and economic emergency funds by next June 30, the end of fiscal year 2012.

With more than a billion dollars in the bank, our state budget is in solid shape. That means we can put our focus where it needs to be: investing in job creation and helping Iowans recover from the national recession.

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