ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

To support our mission of growing the state, ICA focuses on economic growth as a key driver to grow Iowa's population by attracting and retaining business and talent.

ICA supports the Iowa Economic Development Authority's (IEDA) concentration on expanding markets in which the state is already a recognized leader. We seek opportunity to design responsible incentives that help attain innovative projects and develop business in advanced manufacturing, bioscience, and financial and insurance sectors; creating jobs, while ensuring transparency, accountability, and a return on investment for Iowa taxpayers.

Given the competitive economic development environment, Iowa must continue to provide valuable economic development tax credits and programs that compliment Iowa's tax code and attracts business investment. While ICA supports tax credits and programs that have documented returns and clear objectives, we also oppose changes to or the elimination of economic development-oriented tax credits without regular and comprehensive review for usefulness, efficacy and return on investment.

Economic Development Tools

ICA views incentives as an integral part of our state's success. Economic development tools should grow capital investment, increase wages and achieve quality job creation. ICA supports the following incentive programs:

  • Research Activities Credits (RAC): Iowa's RAC has been utilized as a model by other states to incentivize additional investment in research and development. Companies must balance substantial financial risk with market profitability and this credit allows businesses to strategically plan for the long-term. The RAC provides an offset to Iowa's uncompetitive tax corporate climate.
  • High Quality Jobs Credits: This program is one of the main tools for IEDA to attract new business and incentivize expansion in Iowa's leading industries.
  • Historic Preservation Credits: The tax credit aids the revitalization of historic properties that have the potential to catalyze surrounding growth and positively impact placemaking.

Finally, ICA is supportive of policy tools available to local governments such as Tax Increment Financing and abatement, as these are sometimes the most critical element in decisions that attract and expand business. Utilized prudently, they generate significant return on investment and have positive long-term growth benefits for communities.

Housing and Development

In addition to quality of life projects, housing remains a huge area of need in every community. ICA applauds the Governor and Legislature's budget expansion for the Workforce Housing Tax Credit in 2021 that will address project backlogs in this program that has proven return on investment. This, along with removal of the sunset for the Brownfields/Grayfields Development Tax Credits, provides resources address large lot vacancies and allow local communities to thoughtfully develop.