With the Iowa economy on the mend, the Legislature focused this year on enhanced job creation and economic growth.
We approved expanded job training, smart tax breaks, investments in the industries of the future, strengthening education, and ensuring workers and businesses have the resources they need.
Not every good idea made it to the Governor’s desk, but those that did will have a positive impact. They include:
• Jumpstarting new Iowa energy industries through tax credits for the construction and installation of solar energy systems and geothermal heat pumps (SF 2342)
• Continuing the tax break for consumers filling up with ethanol-blended fuel at the pump (HF 2472)
• Improving the flow of commerce by extending Iowa’s commercial and industrial highway network (SF 2153)
• Boosting Iowa’s agriculture economy through year-round farmers’ markets (HF 2092)
• Keeping businesses in our communities by making it easier for employers to sell their companies to local workers through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (HF 2465)
• Investing in innovative local economic development ideas that create good jobs and growth in Iowa communities (SF 2239)
• Expanding opportunities for local auto dealers to offer vehicles for sale at fairs, shows and other exhibitions (SF 2249)
The Senate also approved several job creation initiatives that the House did not take up. I’ll keep pushing for these and other common-sense efforts to boost Iowa’s economy:
• Ensuring more publicly funded projects in Iowa use American-made goods.
• Allowing Iowa businesses the chance to match out-of-state bids when selling products and services to the state.
• Helping communities clean-up and revitalize their business districts and industrial parks.
• Leveling the playing field for Iowa businesses by collecting sales tax on Internet purchases from large, out-of-state companies.
• Cutting taxes for low-income, working Iowa households by increasing the state Earned Income Tax Credit.
• Increasing tax credits to encourage local wind energy projects.